Gmail Settings Let Strangers Send You Email

If you're a business that uses free Gmail, you might want to take note about this new potential security issue.

Google has begun rolling out a new Gmail "feature" that, by default, lets anyone on Google+, even total strangers, send email directly to your Gmail account (as opposed to your Google+ stream). They have implemented some controls and let you opt out, but there are still annoyances and security risks, especially if you don't get this information to your employees quickly enough.

We'll show you how to opt out, which you can share with your employees or staff. If you want to avoid headaches like this in the future, you could switch to a secure business email provider like us.

Default Gmail Settings Open the Door to Spammers

Here's how it works. If you're a Google+ user, buried in the middle of your Gmail settings will be an innocent-looking section called "Email via Google+". The default setting is "Anyone on Google+". If you don't change that, anyone on Google+ can send you an email.

That includes spammers harvesting Google+ pages for email addresses. If you reply to such an email, the spammer will have your email address. But even without replying, it opens the door for spammers to send all sorts of unsolicited email to people that include dangerous links.

You can opt out of future emails from that person, but once they have your address, they can create other Gmail addresses and Google+ pages to spam you from, sell the email lists they've harvested to others, etc.

How to Prevent Google Plus Users From Emailing You

It's not too difficult to opt out, but it's also not obvious. The settings are in your Gmail account, not your Google Plus page.

  1. Log in to your gmail account at with your email address and password.
  2. Go to the Settings Page: Click the gear icon at the top right and then click "Settings".
  3. Scroll down until you see the section heading "Email via Google+".
  4. Select the pulldown next to "Who can email you via your Google+ profile?" and click on the setting you want. The safest option is "No one"
Gmail settings for Google Plus email security

Gmail Settings for Google Plus - Email Security

Google Plus Settings - Who Can Send You Email

Gmail Google Plus Settings - Who Can Send You Email

Secure Business Email and Collaboration from Greenview Data

Your business can't afford the annoyances, privacy concerns and security risks that come with "free" email. As you've probably learned, most Internet services that claim to be "free" come with "gotchas" that waste your time or invade your privacy.

It might be time to consider moving to a secure Cloud-based business email service like ours that you can access anytime, anywhere from almost any device. Ours comes with a host of important collaboration and security features and absolute privacy that you simply can't get with "free" email. And there's no "gotchas". Just secure business email.

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If a conversation about secure email makes sense for your business or practice, give us a call, chat or email anytime. We're always here. 24/7/365. | 800-458-3348 | 734-426-7500 |