Google to scan for suspicious email activity

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Users will be notified of shady Gmail logins.

In hopes of combating spam and cybercrime, Google said that it will be notifying users of suspicious activity on their Gmail accounts.

The company said that it would begin offering its users details on when their accounts were last accessed and logs of the IP addresses used to log-in to the online e-mail service.

The new feature will present users with a log-in history sorted by IP address and location of the activity. Additionally, users will be notified when their Gmail accounts are accessed from a different region of the world and given the opportunity to change their log-in credentials from within the same window.

The company is also planning to eventually extend the feature to its Apps online productivity suite.

The aim, said Google, was to help users prevent attackers from hijacking their accounts and using their names for spam activity or social engineering attacks directed towards friends and family members.

"While we don't have the capability to determine the specific location from which an account is accessed, a login appearing to come from one country and occurring a few hours after a login from another country may trigger an alert," wrote Google engineering director Pavni Diwanji in a posting to the Google security blog.

"Keep in mind that these notifications are meant to alert you of suspicious activity but are not a replacement for account security best practices."

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