New Zealand Blog
Google news for Kiwis
Keep track of your favorite places and share them with friends
Tuesday, February 14, 2017
Is your bucket list etched in your memory, or scribbled on a dozen post-it notes scattered around your home? Have you ever promised out-of-town guests an email full of your favorite spots, only to never get around to clicking send? Starting today, you can create lists of places, share your lists with others, and follow the lists your friends and family share with you—without ever leaving the Google Maps app (Android, iOS).
Getting started is easy. Simply open the Google Maps app and find that Dim Sum spot you’ve been wanting to try. Tapping on the place name and then the “Save” icon adds the place to one of several pre-set lists like “Want to Go” or “Favorites.” You can also add the restaurant to a new list that you name yourself, like “Finger Lickin’ Dumplings.” To recall the lists you’ve created, go to Your Places (in the side menu) and then open the saved tab. Icons for the places you’ve saved to lists will appear on the map itself, so you’ll always know whether one of your must-try spots is nearby.
Because sharing is caring, we made it easy to share lists like “Best Views in Auckland” via text, email, social networks and popular messaging apps. Whenever friends and family come to town, tap the share button to get a link and start flexing your local knowledge muscles. Once you send a link to your out-of-towners, they can tap “Follow” to pull up the list from Your Places whenever they need it. Here’s how it all works in real life:
The lists you follow are with you wherever you take Google Maps and are viewable on mobile and desktop—and even offline. Next time you're on a trip, download offline maps of the area in advance and you'll be able to see all the places you’ve added to lists on the map itself.
With the millions of landmarks, businesses and other points of interest in Google Maps, there’s no shortage of places to try. Now that we’ve got the world mapped, it’s your turn to map
world with Lists—from local hotspots to bucket list destinations worlds away.
Zach Maier, Product Manager, Google Maps
Bringing Shopping Ads to New Zealand - connecting shoppers and retailers online
Monday, February 13, 2017
As thousands of New Zealand students returned to school this month, here’s a stat that might not surprise some mums and dads out there: New Zealand
searches for “backpack”
have grown by 21% since this time last year. But it’s not just backpacks, searches for the latest fashion, tech and school supplies are surging. Maybe you are searching online today for the perfect Valentine’s Day gift? More than half (
) of Kiwis use the Internet to compare products, prices or features to help make purchase decisions.
We know that this type of research can take time, so we want to help streamline the process for Kiwi shoppers. Today we’re rolling out Shopping Ads - image based ads that help shoppers find the products they're searching for and quickly connect with the merchants who sell those products - in New Zealand. You'll now see them alongside your Google Search results.
So if you’re searching for lunch-boxes or laptops, you can find exactly the one you’re looking for — and easily connect with a retailer who sells it.
Retailers, reach people when they want to buy what you sell
If you're a business, you can use Google Shopping campaigns to promote the products you sell, boost traffic to your website or local store, and find better qualified leads by putting product images, price, and business name in front of people searching on Google. Like search ads, you only pay when people click through to your website. Instead of targeting based on keywords, however, these ads are targeted based on the product data you provide. Learn more
Whether it’s back to school supplies or maybe you’re looking for a Valentine's Day gift,
can help you find what you’re looking for every time. Top marks for that!
Posted by Aaron Berger, Product Manager for Google Shopping
Working around the clock to protect your privacy and security
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
There are plenty of things we can all do to be safer and more secure online. Having a strong and unique password on different accounts is a good start - who hasn’t recycled the same combination of your pet’s name and the numbers ‘1-2-3’? We’ve all been guilty of that at one stage or another.
Other measures include exchanging personal information only on encrypted sites, and keeping your software up to date with the latest patches - these tried-and-true tips have never been more important and effective. Take our
two-minute Security Checkup
to protect your account and adjust your security settings, and learn more about other ways to keep your Google Account secure at
Safer Internet Day
, we wanted to give some insight into how our systems protect you automatically - on Google and beyond. No switches to flip or buttons to click, just the stuff that happens in the background that keeps you protected around the clock while you go about your day.
Outsmarting phishing to protect your Google Account
Spam emails take advantage of your trust in friends and businesses to try and steal your username and password
An email may look like it came from someone trustworthy, but it might be a wolf in sheep’s clothing. This spammy message is trying to phish you—trick you into giving away your personal information—and then give its authors access to your account.
Luckily, we’ve built lots of smart armour into Gmail that helps to block dodgy messages before you ever see them. Our systems anonymously examine thousands of signals on Gmail - where a message originated, to whom it’s addressed, what’s contained in the message, how often the sender has contacted the recipient in the past - to determine which messages are safe, and which ones aren’t. We then filter the vast majority of this nasty stuff out; the average Gmail inbox contains less than 0.1 percent spam.
Even that’s not enough, though, because the bad guys can be pretty clever. For example, a fraudster could steal your username and password because you accidentally shared them on an especially deceptive scam site. But even if attackers have your credentials, our systems are still able to block them and keep your account safe - something we did hundreds of millions of times in 2016. That's because we aren’t just making sure you’ve typed the right password.
We also look for subtler signals to confirm the sign-in is you and not someone else: Are you using the same device that you usually use? Are you in a familiar location, or somewhere far away that you haven’t been to before? Scammers leave behind a trail of clues that help us inspect each log-in attempt and compare it with the picture of a safe log-in that our systems have painted based on billions and billions of other log-ins. If something looks fishy, we’ll require more verifications designed to thwart bad guys, send notifications to your phone, or email you so you can quickly act on anything that looks unfamiliar.
On the web, on Android: we've got you covered
We use similar security tools to help make the web and a huge variety of Android apps and devices safer, too.
For example, have you ever clicked a link and seen a red warning, like this one below?
A Safe Browsing warning: red means stop!
at work, strongly suggesting you should avoid visiting a site because it probably contains “badness,” like malware or a phishing trap. Similar to the way we crawl the web to deliver search results, Safe Browsing crawls for bad stuff that might be harmful to you or your device. It’s always hard at work: We show
tens of millions of Safe Browsing warnings
every week on more than
2 billion devices
, across a variety of web browsers.
For our Android users, we developed an “app analyzer” that builds on Safe Browsing’s technology to specifically hunt for dangerous Android apps, wherever they may be, and warn you before you install one. If an app doesn’t pass the app analyzer test, it’s not be allowed in Google Play.
Detecting the obvious badness — sites well-known for phishing scams, ransomware that locks your device until you pay a fraudster — is relatively easy. But the stealthier badness is only detectable by measuring billions of signals across sites and apps. If this sounds similar to the way we approach spam protections on Gmail or suspicious logins into Google, that’s because it is! The ability to understand badness on a large scale enables us to find the clues bad guys didn’t even know they were leaving behind.
We have a responsibility to keep you safe on Google, and help make the web more secure as well. We’re constantly improving our automatic protections, but we want to give you the controls to adjust your security settings as well.
Don't forget to take our
and learn more about other ways to keep your Google Account secure at
, and happy Safer Internet Day!
Posted by Darren Bilby, Security Engineering Manager - Infrastructure Protection, Google Australia
Did someone say homework? Online safety tips for back-to-school week
Friday, February 3, 2017
From Kaitaia to Bluff, thousands of students across New Zealand headed back to school this week. Along with new books and uniforms, many students will be getting new devices and exploring new things online. It’s an exciting time for students, but parents and carers might be looking for some tips on encouraging responsible online behaviours - in and out of the classroom.
Managing privacy and security
The new year and the lead up to
Safer Internet Day
is a great time to check in with the privacy and security settings on your account (or your child’s).
gives you quick access to settings and tools that let you safeguard your data, protect your privacy, and decide how your information can make Google services work better for you. You can update your password, check out your personal information and change your account preferences.
More parental controls
So the kids are home from school and ready to relax… many families are already enjoying the
YouTube Kids app
, and now you can have more control over what your kids watch in the app. A new
parental control feature
gives parents the tools to decide what content is right for their family and the option to block videos or channels. Because you’re logged in, the videos and channels you block in
will remain blocked across all your devices. You can also tailor the experience for based on age and set a timer to limit screen time for your kids, so the app alerts when the session is over.
Google in the classroom
Our back-to-school update wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t share some updates about
Google for Education
tools, which more than 70 million students and teachers around the world use every day. We’ve introduced a new generation of
, launching later this year, with new features such as stylus, world facing camera and easy access to Android apps, and our education team is working with schools around New Zealand to support ‘bring-your-own-device’ programs.
to make it easier for teachers to give individual attention to students. Stay tuned for more updates on this…
So, a bit of homework (completely optional, of course)! Hope these tips help you and your kids to stay safe and make the most of the web as the school term begins.
Posted by Suan Yeo, Education Evangelist, Google Australia and New Zealand
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