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Stay safe online ahead of shopping season

Do you hear that? Click, tap, kaching! The frenzy of the year-end shopping season is upon us. In Asia, that means big shopping occasions like 10/10, 11/11 and 12/12. It also — unfortunately — means an increase in risks that users face, as more people head online and the range of threats from cybercrime increases.According…

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Do you hear that? Click, tap, kaching! The frenzy of the year-end shopping season is upon us. In Asia, that means big shopping occasions like 10/10, 11/11 and 12/12. It also — unfortunately — means an increase in risks that users face, as more people head online and the range of threats from cybercrime increases.

According to data from the United Nations, cybercrime has already risen 600% since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. But how and why are people still at risk? Where are people most vulnerable? And what can we do differently to better protect ourselves online, not just during shopping season, but all year round? To find out, we commissioned a study, conducted by YouGov, surveying over 13,000 respondents aged 18 and above across Asia-Pacific. Here are our findings, and our top tips for staying safe online.

1. Password recycling = risk

Poor password “hygiene” is far too common in Asia-Pacific, with over 80% of respondents using the same passwords across multiple sites, and almost half admitting to recycling passwords for up to 10 unique sites. If a password is stolen on any of these sites, a user’s accounts on the other sites become vulnerable as well. A worrying 1 in 2 respondents also confessed to using guessable passwords with easily-crackable combinations, such as significant dates and names of partners or pets.

What do we suggest people do instead?

  • Create a unique password for each account to eliminate this risk. Make sure that each password is hard to guess and better yet, at least eight characters long.
  • Use a password manager to make it easier to create and use strong and unique passwords on all your devices, without the need to remember or repeat each one. Google’s Password Manager, built directly into Chrome, Android and the Google App, can help you do this. Using a password manager makes signing in convenient, especially on small mobile screens – instead of entering in a password each time, you can just press a button

2. Set up your security safety net

According to our study, two in three respondents across Asia-Pacific have experienced a data breach or know someone who has. Here are some ways you can protect yourselves against fraud.

  • Set up a security phone number or email address, and keep it updated so banks and other service providers can contact you right away if there’s suspicious activity on your account.
  • Take the Google Security Checkup to preemptively strengthen the security of your Gmail account and get personalized security recommendations — it only takes two minutes to complete. Since people often use their Gmail accounts to register with their banks, shopping sites, and payment services, this increases security on top of our automatic protections.
  • Set up 2-Step Verification (2SV) on every site that offers it. This dramatically increases security by requiring “something you know” (like a password) and “something you have” (like your phone or a security key).

More than 60% of people we surveyed said they are likely to adopt 2SV, but only 6% of people we surveyed currently use it. We know the best way to keep people safe is to turn on Google security protections by default. By the end of 2021, we plan to auto-enroll an additional 150 million Google users in 2SV and require two million YouTube creators to turn it on.

3. “Add to Cart” with Care

Three in four people admit to making purchases on pages without the secure symbol, increasing the opportunity for fraudsters to steal details.

We recently announced HTTPS-first mode in Chrome. HTTPS is a secure and private way for people to communicate with websites. If you enable this mode, Chrome will show you a warning if a website doesn’t support HTTPS.

We also recommend making sure you’re always running the latest version of software on all your devices. Some software, like Chrome, will automatically update. For other services that send notifications when it’s time to update, don’t click “remind me later”— take the time to install the update right away.

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The facts about the temporary Match Group agreement

No other mobile platform is as open as Android and Google Play, and no other platform has shown more willingness to champion user choice, invest in change, or collaborate with developers. We are currently defending these points in court against Match Group, and at the court’s request, on May 19 we reached a temporary agreement…

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No other mobile platform is as open as Android and Google Play, and no other platform has shown more willingness to champion user choice, invest in change, or collaborate with developers. We are currently defending these points in court against Match Group, and at the court’s request, on May 19 we reached a temporary agreement while the case is being heard and we prepare our planned countersuit.

On May 20, Match Group disregarded the stipulations it agreed to in court with a misleading press release that mischaracterizes what happened in the proceeding. We want to once again set the record straight to make sure the rest of the developer ecosystem is aware of the facts.

The court asked us temporarily not to remove Match Group’s apps from the Play Store on June 1 for its violation of our terms until a full trial in exchange for the following:

  • Match Group has to put up to $40 million in an escrow account to begin to account for the service fees it owes us.
  • Match Group must also provide Google with a monthly accounting of all in-app sales of digital goods and services from June 1 through trial so we can track what it owes for the immense benefit it receives from Google Play.
  • Match Group must work in good faith to further enable Google Play’s billing system as an option for users. Google agreed to work in good faith to continue to develop additional billing system features that are important to Match Group, as Google has already been doing for years with countless developers, including Match Group.

And Match Group’s claim that it can’t integrate Play’s billing system because it lacks key features contradicts the fact that Match Group has been proactively and successfully using Play’s billing in more than 10 of its apps. Match Group collected hundreds of millions in consumer revenue in over 50 countries through Google Play’s billing last year.

Not only are we confident we’ll succeed in defending against Match Group’s unfounded complaint, we will be filing a countersuit against Match Group for violating their obligations under the Developer Distribution Agreement and to ensure Google Play remains a trusted destination for users.

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NativeNonprofit.day highlights Native-led organizations

Native Americans/American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians make up 2% of the U.S. population, yet large philanthropic foundations allocate less than half a percent of their total annual grantmaking towards Native communities, according to Native Americans in Philanthropy.The Native Ways Federation (NWF) is working to change this disparity. Founded in 2008 by seven national,…

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Native Americans/American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians make up 2% of the U.S. population, yet large philanthropic foundations allocate less than half a percent of their total annual grantmaking towards Native communities, according to Native Americans in Philanthropy.

The Native Ways Federation (NWF) is working to change this disparity. Founded in 2008 by seven national, Native-led nonprofit organizations, the NWF unites the Native nonprofit sector, advocates for Native nonprofits and provides resources to educate people on the needs of Native communities. On May 20, NWF is launching their inaugural Native Nonprofit Day to drive awareness for Native-led nonprofits that are systematically underfunded. To help celebrate this initiative, they’ve partnered with the Google Registry team to register and use the domain NativeNonprofit.day, which anyone can visit to learn about and support Native nonprofits.

Initiatives like Native Nonprofit Day play an important role in building awareness and amplifying the voices of Native people. As a citizen of the Oneida (Onyota’a:ka) Nation of Wisconsin and a lead for the Google Aboriginal and Indigenous Network (GAIN), I see so many inspiring Indigenous organizations that are doing impactful work, but these groups and their efforts are sorely underrepresented in mainstream media. That’s why I hope everyone will take a moment today to visit NativeNonprofit.day to learn more about the NWF’s efforts, and other Native-led organizations that are doing critical work to support Native communities.

At Google, we’ve also launched several initiatives to support Native communities. Google.org recently announced a $10 million grant to the National Digital Inclusion Alliance to provide vocational internet training to thousands of rural and tribal communities.

Grow with Google made a $1 million investment in Partnership with Native Americans to provide digital skills curriculum and career services to 10,000 students at more than 50 Native-serving organizations. This program will also reach high school students preparing for college and careers, as well as vocational and non-traditional students.

If there’s an initiative or special day you want to raise awareness for, you can get your own .day domain name by visiting new.day.

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Enjoy a warm cup of trends for International Tea Day

From bubble tea to tea ceremonies, tea has deep roots and profound cultural significance across Asia. Just ahead of the United Nations’ International Tea Day on Saturday, May 21, we looked at trends on Google Search around the world and found bags of insights into what the world is searching for when it comes to…

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From bubble tea to tea ceremonies, tea has deep roots and profound cultural significance across Asia. Just ahead of the United Nations’ International Tea Day on Saturday, May 21, we looked at trends on Google Search around the world and found bags of insights into what the world is searching for when it comes to this brew-tea-full beverage.

Worldwide populari-tea

Assam, green or bubble: tea is the world’s most-consumed drink apart from water, so even if Earl Grey isn’t your thing, there’s most likely a brew out there that fits you to a T. But which types of tea are the most popular?

  1. Bubble tea
  2. Green tea
  3. Matcha
  4. Black tea
  5. Milk tea
  6. Kombucha
  7. Masala chai
  8. Iced tea
  9. Hibiscus tea
  10. Ginger tea

Worldwide top-searched types of tea, past 12 months. Source: Google Trends.

Green tea used to be the most popular type of tea on Search — until last year, when bubble tea bubbled up to become the most-searched type of tea around the world. The rise has been remarkable, with search interest for bubble tea more than tripling in the last five years, an increase of +220% worldwide. We’ve seen a similar trend with matcha; the beverage is now the world’s third most popular type of tea after search interest went up by +70% in the last five years.

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