Google meta-hack targets nerds & sniffers

confidentialIt’s been known for a long time that you could use a simple Google search for “confidential” and “do not distribute” to find plenty of confidential stuff that all kinds of organizations and companies put on their web servers. With a bit of luck you get to see all kinds of drafts or internal memos, if you’re into it. (Supposedly it’s most fun when the search is restricted to government sites like .gov.)

A U.S. based company ( – a supplier of wireless devices?) has exploited this Google hack to get a higher Google ranking for their odd products: If you run the same Google search for confidential documents mentioned above, the number two hit is said company. The link goes to a PDF document stating:

Ooops… This document was cleared for public release. We simply forgot to remove the “CONFIDENTIAL” label. But given the free advertising, maybe we’ll try this again. Embed our technology in your product…

Who the heck are they targeting with this kind of ad? I mean, props to their marketing division and/or webmaster. Hack successfully applied. But why should anyone spontaneously buy their (!) when looking for confidential government data?


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