Thursday, January 05, 2012

Blog Owners Report Disabled Blogger / GMail / Google Accounts - January 2012

This week, we're seeing a few reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, of disabled Blogger and GMail accounts, again with ominous warnings of "suspicious activity" or "unusual activity" on your account. Besides a disabled Blogger account, loss of AdSense, Blogger, Picasa, and other services is reported. This is similar to an earlier experience from May 2011.

In many cases, people with disabled accounts should be automatically redirected to Google Accounts Help: Account has been disabled. You can start there, where you are advised, generically, why accounts are being disabled.

If your account was not righteously disabled, you'll find the appropriate instruction in the last paragraph.
Please start by reviewing the relevant Terms of Service. Then, if you think your account should not have been disabled, please contact us.
Clicking on "contact us", you see Google Accounts Help: My account is disabled. Here, you are advised
Please summarize what happened when your account became disabled so we can investigate. We'll follow up with you only if we require more information or we have additional information to share.

Be sure to provide an active email address, for contact. When you fill out the form, this is not the time for insisting on anonymity. Selecting "No", for
Do you currently have access to the email address that you use to sign in to your account?
you are asked for
An email address we can use to contact you
If you truly want your account reactivated, provide an email account which you use, or check, frequently.

Having filled out the form, and hit "Submit", you wait patiently. The number of similar reports, combined with the time of year (first week following end of year holidays), may cause the queue, from this form, to be processed relatively slowly. Note that fuzzy spam classification may result in various Google accounts and assets being taken off-line and even deleted - and the accounts and assets may not all be restored immediately - or even simultaneously.

Specifically, we have noted latency on restoration of Blogger blogs, after the owning Blogger accounts are brought back on-line. If your Blogger account is the victim of "suspicious activity", plan for your blogs to be off-line 24 to 48 hours after the account has been restored. Blogger Engineers are aware that this is a problem.

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4 comments:

Jan's Funny Farm said...

A friend's blog disappeared today and she's unable to even post a comment to Blogger Help Forum because they only want to contact her by cell phone and she keeps selecting landline and they keep telling her the mobile phone format is wrong or something. It's really stupid to have to have a cell phone to contact Google. Many of us do NOT have a cell phone!

Chuck Croll said...

Jan,

This is a good topic to discuss in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken.

Considerer said...

This is useful, but I had something a little different - mine was due to 'unusual activity' (no clarification) and I had to provide my phone number and they texted me a verification code to reinstate. My blog now appears to work fine again, but my comments both on my own and other blogs may work or just arbitrarily disappear into the ether.

Chuck Croll said...

Considerer,

Your scenario is precisely what I wrote about.

- Mentioned "unusual activity".
- Required you to provide a phone number, so you could verify ownership using a verification code (i.e., non computer based equivalent of a CAPTCHA).
- Sending you through a maze of referential documents.

The "unusual activity" comes from a hacker, trying to force access to your Blogger / Google account - and the requirement for you to verify ownership comes from Google, protecting your account (and blogs) as best possible, using an online script.

http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/2013/07/hacking-detection-is-generally-not.html