Google Chat scams take on many forms. Here are six common scams circulating the platform today.

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Google Chat, formerly known as “Google Hangouts”, is a chat-based messaging app that gives businesses and regular users a space to collaborate and catch up for free. The app is wildly popular, boasting over 10 million downloads on Google Play alone. But as with other platforms like LinkedIn, its large, predominantly professional user base also makes it a magnet for cyber scammers.

Unlike messaging apps like Signal, Google Chat’s security reputation isn’t great. Conversations on the platform are largely unmonitored and accounts can be reached by anyone with a Gmail email address –  making users more vulnerable to unwanted advances. Falling prey to scams on Google Chat isn’t inevitable, though.

We’ve spoken to real businesses that have fallen victim to Google Chat scams to save you from making the same mistakes. From your standard-issue phishing attacks to less typical cases of sextortion, here are six scams to be aware of on Google Chat, and advice on how to avoid them.

What are Google Chat Scams?

Google Chat scams refer to any type of cybercrime that takes place on the Workspace platform. Scams take a variety of forms: some grifters send chat requests to users directly, while others try and move conversations to Google Chat from social media sites to take advantage of the app’s lackluster security settings.

Due to the platform’s overwhelmingly professional clientele, Google Chat scams tend to mirror cons spotted on other sites like LinkedIn. But cons aren’t just focused around the nine till five, with romance and sextortion scams also becoming more prevalent on the app in recent years.

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