16 Jan Thousands of Google+ hotel listings hijacked
Thousands of hotel listings in Google+ Local had the URLs leading to their websites replaced with links leading to third-party hotel booking services. The listings were appearing when users searched within Google Maps for local business services.
Google’s community manager Jade Wang appologised in a Google Business Help thread.
“We’ve identified a spam issue in Places for Business that is impacting a limited number of business listings in the hotel vertical. The issue is limited to changing the URLs for the business. The team is working to fix the problem as soon as possible and prevent it from happening again. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.”
Read Danny Sullivan’s article at Search Engine Land for a more detailed explanation of how the spammers hijacked the listings.