Russian threat group delivering malware via campaigns using PDFs: Google
Google documents relating to search rankings leakedIANS

Google has confirmed that around 2,500 of its internal documents have been leaked. 

These documents are significant, with details about "data the company collects." This data is valuable as it contains key information which is used as part of Google's search ranking algorithm.

The rumoured leak has been doing the rounds since early May 2024 and has now been confirmed.

On questions related to the search engine, Google spokesperson Davis Thompson told the online technology platform The Verge in an email that "We would caution against making inaccurate assumptions about Search based on out-of-context, outdated, or incomplete information. We've shared extensive information about how Search works and the types of factors that our systems weigh, while also working to protect the integrity of our results from manipulation."

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Google Search engineIANS

The material was first leaked to Rand Fishkin, founder of SparkToro and Co-Founder of Moz on 5th May 2024, as he revealed in his blog, mentioning that the leaked documents outline information on Google's search API. The leaked material suggests that Google reportedly collects and potentially uses data like the number of clicks, domain age and more to determine rankings. Google representatives in the past have contended that these data aspects play no part in determining or measuring rankings and content.

Why is this leak significant?

The availability of algorithm related information also leaves the search engine susceptible to outside attempts to alter, replicate or 'crack' into the system's operation.

The way Google approaches ranking websites and content along with their associated algorithms has been a closely guarded secret. This leak, coupled with disclosures as part of court proceedings in the US, provides more insights into the basis and signals used by Google while ranking website content.