Google Docs Phishing: How To Quarantine And Recover

Problem:

On 5/3/2017 a sophisticated, widespread, self-propagating attack was targeted at Gmail and G Suite users. This attack encourages users to click on an “Open In Docs” button, which then uses your existing login session to authenticate the attacker (without requiring the user to enter their credentials).  By clicking the “Open in Docs” button the user is allowing a script to connect to that user’s mailbox.

Example of malicious message:

This is what the whole attack looks like (courtesy of @zachlatta)

Solution/Workaround:

The below workaround is intended as a temporary solution and does not guarantee that future attacks will be prevented.  Please follow ALL of the steps below. These steps are provided by Agosto on an experimental basis. Agosto assumes no responsibility for any actions performed on your G Suite account.

Prevent Messages from Entering Domain

  1. Login to admin.google.com and create an Admin Quarantine following these steps
  2. Navigate to the Advanced Gmail Settings
  3. Scroll down to Content Compliance and create a new rule matching the screenshot shown in the appendix of this document
    1. Match Type (if any match)
      1. The body contains text https://accounts.google.com/o/oauth2/auth?client_id=
      2. Any envelope recipient is hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh@mailinator.com
    2. Action
      1. Quarantine – Using the Admin Quarantine created in step 1

Revoke Access for anyone who has already authorized this token

  1. Download and Install Google Apps Manager (GAM)
  2. Issue the following command to revoke all existing authorizations
    1. gam all users delete token clientid 366668462857-3qkidqn8oseh9v3fhm3085kpb747bgm7.apps.googleusercontent.com
    2. Optionally append the command with >> log.txt to keep a record of all affected users
  3. Information on this command is found here

Recall any trace of the infected message from all users accounts

  1. Download and Install Google Apps Manager (GAM)
  2. Issue the following command to purge all copies of the message
    1. gam all users delete messages query “to:hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh@mailinator.com” maxtomodify 100 doit
    2. Optionally append the command with >> log.txt to keep a record of all affected users
  3. Information on this command is found here

What Are the Differences Between IBM Notes and Gmail?

Are you or your business considering a switch from IBM Notes to Gmail? Wondering what the differences between IBM Notes and Gmail are?

These two workplace managers have similarities as well as some key differences, both in terms of layout and overall user experience. Understanding these features and their many applications will help your business make an informed decision.

See how a switch to Gmail will affect—and improve—your daily business tasks.

Immediate Impressions: Layout and Formatting

You’ll notice differences in formatting and overall user design from the moment you first open a Gmail. Intuitive navigation systems and information hierarchies make Gmail an incredibly popular email system. Here are some formatting differences you may notice between Gmail and IBM Notes:

  • Messages. In IBM Notes, each message is independent and appears individually in your inbox. On the other hand, Gmail offers grouped conversations, so you can follow messages as a single thread. If you prefer to keep your messages separated, you can change this option in the settings tab.
  • Organization. IBM Notes allows you to store messages in separate subfolders: personal, important, social, and so on. Gmail does the same, but you can add multiple labels to emails and search for them based on any of their tags. So in Gmail an email could be categorized in four tags for example, but in IBM Notes, an email conversation could only be stored in one folder.
  • Keep your inbox clean. IBM Notes offers an option to delete emails. If you’re the type of person who hates the finality of deleting, Gmail offers another option. Archive your emails when you want them out of your inbox but will need to refer to them again later — still able to search for them within the built-in search functionality.
  • Labeling emails. If you want to mark an email as important, there’s a flag for that. When you’re using Gmail, you have two options: either mark as important as a tab, or put a star next to it. You can easily filter all your starred items by clicking that icon under your inbox menu.
  • To-do lists and other tasks. IBM Notes features an option to create independent tasks that sync to your Calendar. Gmail has the same service, linking your to-do items to your Google Calendar, but with an extra option: you can add email messages to your to-do list to avoid retyping your assignments.

Because of its attractive layout and intuitive navigation, Gmail is an efficient way of doing business.

Comparing Email Composition and Accessibility

Compatibility is an important question you should consider when choosing an email service. Gmail and IBM Notes differ in this aspect.

While IBM Notes requires that you use its service on a device on which it’s installed, Gmail allows you to access mail over any device. Even if you want to access your IBM Notes online, you must do it from a device where software is installed.

This is a vital point.

With Gmail, there’s no installation required—access your mail from anywhere with an internet connection (and there’s offline capabilities).

When you log into your Gmail account for the first time, you’ll find that composing and sending email is a piece of cake. Gmail has all the options you love about IBM Notes, with added features. Draft your correspondence with the fonts, headings, and alignment features you want, and sign in your own personal style.

With Gmail, you can add attachments, links, and images for seamless collaboration. For larger files and more effective ways to communicate, take advantage of Google Drive. Drive links allow you to share work tasks with coworkers, managers, and employees. Just insert the link, and everyone can work from the same document.

Thanks to Gmail, effective communication has never been easier.

Do More Business With Gmail

We live in a mobile world that requires constant communication to keep up with the competitive marketplace. Gmail lets you keep with that pace. For mobile networking on the go, download and install the Gmail app.

You’ll never miss another email.

Sometimes, our lives take us off the grid. When you’re offline, you can still keep working. Compose emails, and Gmail will automatically send them when you’re back at an internet connection.

If you’re in the business of sending large files, Gmail has a solution for that too. With Google Drive, you can send files as large as 30 GB—or 30 TB if you have a storage plan.

Today’s business watchword is efficiency. Maximize yours by taking advantage of Gmail’s convenient features:

  • Canned responses. Do you tire of sending the same emails over and over again? Use Gmail’s “canned response” option: simply type a response once, and save the text as a canned response in settings. The next time you need to send the same email, it’s there waiting for you.
  • Auto filters. If you love nothing more than an organized inbox, auto filters are for you. Set recipients as important, or file them by position: employee, vendor, boss, etc.
  • Undo send. We’ve all sent emails we wish we wouldn’t have. The next time you make a typo, forget a recipient, or accidentally reply all, you can undo it using the “undo send” option. Just make sure it’s enabled in your settings.

Tips and Tricks for New Gmail Users

For the novice Gmail user, there are plug-ins and extra add-ons that make your email service experience even better. Try using one of these options to make the most of Gmail:

Boomerang for Gmail is a plug-in that allows you to write emails when you have the time and schedule them to be sent later. For example, you may write an email late at night, but schedule it to send when you know a co-worker is going to be sitting down at a desk for the morning. Your email is the first thing he or she will see.

Gmail Snooze is another handy plug-in that allows you to hit the snooze button on your email, much like your morning alarm clock. If you open an email and don’t tend to it right away, Gmail Snooze will remind you whenever you choose—within minutes, hours, or days. You’ll never miss a follow up again.

Conclusion

Gmail has all the features of IBM Notes with added convenience and efficiency. Nothing beats its user experience and intuitive design.

What Are the Differences Between Gmail and Outlook?

Considering a switch from Microsoft Office to Google Apps for Work? Wondering what the differences between Gmail and Outlook are?

Here’s a brief overview of some of the differences between Gmail and Outlook. These collaboration solutions have their differences, both in organization and overall user experience.

Layout and Formatting

Some of these differences are noticeable if you’re familiar with both solutions. While some of them might be, here are some notable deviations from the Outlook formula:

  • Conversations. In Outlook, each email appears individually as a separate conversation in your inbox. Gmail features grouped conversations, so you can track all responses with the original document in a single thread.
  • Organization. Outlook allows you to store or categorize information in different folders: Inbox, Junk, Flagged, and so on. Gmail lets you apply several different labels to your message, and easily access it by searching for any of its tags, so for example one email could be stored in multiple tags where in folders, a conversation can only reside in one folder.
  • Clearing up your inbox. Outlook offers a simple delete option to keep your inbox clear, but Gmail goes a step further. If you hate a cluttered inbox but are uncomfortable with deleting emails in case you need them later, you can archive them instead. With archiving, you can come back to messages you need later—they’ll be stored neatly in a separate folder.
  • Marking emails. Outlook and Gmail offer different ways to mark items as important. Outlook uses flags while Gmail offers a couple of options: you may elect to tab items as important or star them for easy access later. To access starred items, simply click the label on your inbox menu.
  • Getting things done. Outlook allows you to create independent tasks synced to your Calendar, but Gmail offers more. Tasks automatically sync to your Google Calendar, but you can also add email messages to your to-do list in lieu of creating new tasks.

At first glance, you’ll see that Gmail is a more efficient way of going about your everyday business.

Accessibility and Composition

If you’re considering a switch from Outlook to Gmail, you’ll find the two are similar in terms of compatibility—but they do have some key differences. 

Outlook and Gmail both offer apps for easy access on your mobile device, and you can access your inbox from any device with an internet connection. One key difference: while you must install a version of Outlook on your computer (it comes as a part of Microsoft Office), Gmail has no physical installation component.

Simply access Gmail from your favorite browser.

Once you log into Gmail, you’ll find that composing and sending email has never been easier.

You’ll find all the features you love about Outlook in Gmail: Compose emails with the text alignment and font you want, and add your own personal signature. Add attachments, links, and images.

Having a Gmail account also gives you access to Google Drive, a feature that enables you to quickly and effectively collaborate over one document. Simply add a Google Drive link to share with coworkers or managers, and they can add tracked changes. Collaboration has never been easier.

How Gmail Lets You Do More

Business moves at the speed of technology.

Gmail lets you keep the pace by adding extra features that allow you to continue working no matter where you are. If you’re offline, simply compose emails and save them as Drafts, then Gmail will send them automatically once you’re back online.

Some email services place caps on the size of your attachments. If you need to send large files, Gmail can send them as a Drive link. Drive documents can send files up to 30 GB—or, if you have a storage plan, 30 TB.

Gmail also ups your efficiency by offering “canned” responses. Create email templates you can send out to multiple recipients with just a few clicks. For example, inform candidates of a hiring decision using a filled out email template so don’t need to retype the same messages over and over. Just compose your reply once, and then save it using the canned responses tab.

Are you an organization fanatic? Keep your inbox clean with auto filters that sort through your mail. Set certain email recipients as important, or filter them by position: manager, co-worker, vendor, and more.

Gmail Tips and Tricks

As the world’s largest email service, Gmail has several extra features and available add-ons to help your computing experience reach its full potential. Here are some of our favorite tricks, add-ons, and plug-ins to make your business more efficient:

  • Undo send. Did you miss a recipient or just regret sending that last email? Enable the “undo send” option in your Gmail account, and you’ll never send an accidental email again.
  • Mass unsubscribe. Despite our best efforts, we’re all destined to receive spam. Declutter your inbox by taking advantage of the “mass unsubscribe” option. If you’re sick of getting newsletters from conferences you attended years ago, there’s an unsubscribe button next to the sender’s email address. You can also banish junk emails for good by mass deleting and typing “unsubscribe” into your search box as a search term.
  • Do you have a time lag between when you compose emails and when you want to send them? Download the Boomerang for Gmail plug-in so you can write emails when you want and automatically send them when you’re ready.
  • Do you hate it when your inbox looks overcrowded? Choose the “comfy” option to add more white space between messages and in the right-side navigation. Your eyes will thank you. Enable comfy mode by clicking the gear icon on your screen.

Conclusion

Gmail and Outlook have similar base features. But when it comes to a true cloud solution, convenience, added features, and plug-in options. From ease of access to an intuitive layout, organizing capabilities, and composition techniques, Gmail offers a comprehensive business communication solution. If you’re looking to switch email services, now is the time. Contact Agosto to learn more. 

With user experience and design in mind, Gmail provides a superior, more intuitive experience than Microsoft Outlook.

Giving Back: The Sanneh Foundation Learns Google Apps

Agosto had the opportunity recently to give back to the community through The Sanneh Foundation, a nonprofit that helps youth development and gender equity locally in St. Paul, and in Haiti.

The Foundation sends mentors to schools to meet with the students who are least likely to graduate. They tutor and mentor these kids to improve their grades and help them graduate. The program is growing, but they’re adding more schools in their program every year and seeing a huge improvement in their grades.

“There’s no way we could be that productive without a solution like Google Apps.”

And in Haiti, they have an after school program. The Sanneh Foundation helps develop the kids into leaders by teaching the importance of respect and equality. The kids have to meet minimum grade requirements in order to go to the program, which offers incentive for the kids to stay in school and study hard. About 300 kids come every day for soccer coaching. Soccer is used as a “carrot” to get them there, and then the coaches teach them skills that they will then take off the field and have for life.

The Sanneh Foundation was founded by Tony Sanneh from St. Paul. Coming from a single parent home, life was tough growing up. After years of dedicating himself to school and to his passion, soccer, the Minnesota Thunder signed him. Tony moved to Europe and played for club leagues. Going on to a very successful professional soccer career, he retired in 2011. Throughout his career, he had a desire to help kids from the inner city. That’s how the The Sanneh Foundation was born.

We were so excited to be able to help support the incredible mission of The Sanneh Foundation  locally and internationally. They had been on Google Apps for a couple of years, but had never gone through training. Many of their employees are millennials, and Gmail is what they use for their personal accounts. Most of the employees (locally, and in Haiti) knew how to use Google Apps in some capacity, but there had never been any written documentation to get everyone in the organization on the same page. As a result, many of the more complicated features were not used to their full potential.

We sent in our training expert, Mary, and our technical expert, Shane, to train The Sanneh Foundation to help them learn the full breadth of Google Apps so they can collaborate easier and faster.

The Foundation uses Gmail and Drive the most. They use it to collaborate with remote workers, even in Haiti. Google Apps enables them to help the community and continue to develop inner city kids.

“Mary and Shane were great. Mary was very in-depth. She kept it relevant for what we needed, and walked us through practical examples of the basic features with things we’ve never used before like Sites. We used the admin console very minimally, just to add users and make user groups. But Shane dove deeper into features like provisioning apps, which helped us grasp the product more holistically.”

HELP! Can Google Apps Work Offline?

Hi there, I’m Shane. I’m a sales engineer and car enthusiast, but today I’m a blogger.

One of the most common questions (objections?) I hear when talking to people about Google Apps is, “Does it work offline?” If you’re a Google administrator, you might get asked this question from people in your company.

The simple answer is yes. Yes it can.

But, I always come back with a counter question: When are you ever working offline? I find that people often forget that we are in 2015.

The internet is practically everywhere you ever go

I personally carry with me a laptop, Nexus 9 tablet, and a Samsung S4 phone (I know, it’s old). Between all these devices, being without internet is an incredible rarity. Obviously at home and the office I have WiFi networks available.

Traveling? I haven’t been to an airport in the last two years that doesn’t offer WiFi access. And that includes the municipal airport in Durango, Co.

Go ahead. Look it up. I’ll wait.

Even while airborne, the majority of continental US flights offer onboard WiFi that’s more than enough to get you access to the majority of Google’s services. You can work while enjoying that tomato juice, cruising at 35,000 feet.

If I’m ever at a site without WiFi available, then I use my trusty S4. I can either use Google’s truly impressive mobile app suite to take care of small tasks, or flip on tethering and switch use my laptop for the full experience.

I remember being tied to my desk to hook to a phone line with my 9600bps trying to look at the contents of the Sears christmas catalog, now the sum of all human information is at our fingertips almost anywhere you go. It’s staggering, really.

There are only two legitimate arguments I’ve come across for why offline access is a necessity:

1) I have to work from a truck in the middle of a field, in the middle of nowhere.
2) I have to work on a flight without WiFi.

I’m not only here to tell you that it’s 2015 and we have internet virtually everywhere. I’m also going to tell you exactly how to get work done in these circumstances, service by service.

Gmail

Gmail has multiple options for offline use.

For your laptop or Chromebook, Chrome has an app called Gmail Offline. This app allows you to set a period of time you want your emails to stay in your inbox (30, 60, 90 or days). If you install the Gmail Offline Sync Optimizer plugin for Google Chrome, messages will automatically stay synced as new messages are received.

With this setup, If you find yourself offline and attempt to load Gmail, you’ll automatically be redirected to the offline version installed on your computer. As soon as you reconnect to the internet, any changes you’ve made while offline will automatically be re-synced back to Google and you’ll resume using your familiar Gmail interface.

As for your mobile device, it is already storing content locally for offline access. Everyone understands that while cellular service is really good these days (did you ever try to use a phone in the 90s?) it’s still not perfect. So the Gmail app automatically stores the last 30 days of mail on your phone, and can be set to store more if you’d like. Again, coming back online with your phone or tablet will automatically re-sync the data changed back to Google.

Calendar

On a laptop or Chromebook, simply opening the settings menu in Google Calendar will reveal the “Offline” option. This will install the Calendar plugin, and automatically begin syncing your primary calendar. If you need to manage more calendars, you can add them later through the offline settings option.

Currently, you can view your calendar, and respond to RSVP options while in offline mode, but new entries aren’t supported. That’s why we fall back on recommending you use your mobile device to create calendar entries if needed.

On your mobile device, if you have Google Calendar installed, you’re ready to go. The Google Calendar app automatically keeps all of your appointment data stored locally so that you won’t miss a beat.

 

Drive

Google Drive has full functionality offline, and all you need to do to enable it is to check one little box. Once you’re in drive, go to Settings > Settings. When the window pops up, click the checkbox for “Offline”, and save it. Drive will automatically sync anything in native format that’s in your “My Drive” folder. It’s always a good idea to give that folder a once over before you unplug, to make sure you’ve got your needed files.

On the mobile side of things, Google Drive, Docs, and Sheet applications all have offline functionality, but they recognize that the storage space on your mobile device is more valuable, so you’ll need to specifically select documents you want to make available offline. Once you do that, they will be updated automatically after any changes, and a local copy will be stored.

So again, Can Google Apps Work Offline? Between these three categories, we’ve covered 99% of the offline needs for Google Apps users. If you’ve got different or unique needs, please post them in the comments below! We’d love to hear about interesting cases, and what you’ve done to address those needs.