Google’s Blogger Platform Temporarily Displays “Deceptive Site Ahead” Alerts on Blogspot Website

On Friday night May 14, 2021 about 7:30 p.m. the Google blog platform known as “Blogger” acted abnormally by falsely declaring blogs as “Dangerous” in the URL field. Some users and readers were faced with a bright red screen that warned “Deceptive site ahead!” … the warning serving as a wall to users could choose to back off to safety, or proceed to the so-called deceptive or dangerous website.




Even blogspot itself was marked as deceptive on Friday, May 14, 2021
Even blogspot itself was marked as deceptive on Friday, May 14, 2021.

Deceptive site ahead

Attackers on 3.bp.blogspot.com may trick you into doing something dangerous like installing software or revealing your personal information (for example, passwords, phone numbers, or credit cards)

Websites that were marked “dangerous” in the URL field displayed web pages with broken graphic images. In other words, all photos, logos, and graphics displayed the standard broken image graphic.




The trouble was fixed within about 30 minutes without any actions needed by blogger account users. There was no explanation on any of the status pages or social me˜dia pages that are associated with Blogger.

ChicagoFireMap.net marked as "Dangerous" in the URL field and displaying broken images (Ad and log-in information blurred)
ChicagoFireMap.net marked as “Dangerous” in the URL field and displaying broken images (Ad and log-in information blurred).
Arlington-News.com walled off as deceptive with a bright red warning page for about 30 minutes Friday night, May 14, 2021
Arlington-News.com walled off as deceptive with a bright red warning page for about 30 minutes Friday night, May 14, 2021.

On Downdetector.com’s Blogger category, several people reported deleted posts on their blogs along with the. Some people reported that only posts with images were deleted.

Trouble reports peaked at 7:33 p.m. CDT on Downdetector.com with 51 (per minute) reports of problems. The first trouble reports began at 5:33 p.m. and the number of trouble reports diminished to near baseline by about 9:03 p.m.




Blogger is an online content management system (CMS) hosted by Google which allows authors to manage free blogs hosted on the Google blogger platform, and also enables multi-user blogs with time-stamped entries. A user can have up to 100 free blogs or websites per account. The other major blogging platform is WordPress that is not affiliated with Google. WordPress has a free version but many businesses host their own WordPress websites, or use hosting services that are provided for a wide range of costs. Several other easy-to-use website platforms from other providers are also available for a range of costs or free of charge.

Pyra Labs developed Blogger and launched the platform on August 23, 1999. Blogger was acquired by Google in 2003. Google hosts the blogs, which can be accessed through a subdomain of blogspot.com. Many “blogger” blogs end the url (“web address”) with “blogspot.com”; however, users can also configure their blogs to be accessed from a user-owned custom domain by using DNS their domain register’s facilities to direct a domain to Google’s servers.




Google’s Blogger has a wide international user base and is available in more than 60 languages. Blogger is fairly simple to use, with many convenient useful features, but doesn’t have the flexibility or number of features that are available on WordPress.

Authors using the Blogger platform have to be careful to follow standards set by Google/Blogger or face suspension or de-platforming. The author of the popular website secondcitycop.blogspot.com was either de-platformed or warned about content in January 2021. WGN9 reported in January 2021 that Google denied attempting to interfere with Second City Cop — a blog that published inside information about the Chicago Police Department, policies and interactions with City Hall and Mayor Lori Lightfoot. Many articles were critical of Lightfoot and used language that many would claim was “politically incorrect.”

On Friday night May 14, 2021 following the correction of the technical glitch, a check on secondcitycop.blogspot.com showed a status alert stating: “This blog is open to invited readers only”

Regarding the glitch Friday night, blog authors got a scare to have their blogs incorrectly labeled as a deceptive website that might be attempting to install software “malware” or revealing or harvesting




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