New Google Plus Feature Raises Online Stalking Concerns

8:06 PM, Jan 13, 2014   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +
Credit: Gmail Official blog

Columbia, SC (WLTX) - On January 9th, Google+ announced a plan to unroll a new feature allowing users to email anyone in the system without requiring the recipient's email.

Many have responded saying along with the marketing opportunity, the new tool also brings the possibility of cyber stalking and spamming.

Riggs Partners Inbound Marketing Specialist William Goodman says as a positive, businesses like his would be able to use the tool to directly contact their followers.

"A lot of marketers, ourselves included, use Google+. It's mainly for web optimization more than anything else, however, if you are a marketer looking to get in touch more directly with your followers, this is certainly a way to do it," said Goodman.

Possibly seeing the potential risk that comes with the new accessibility, Google will allow users to opt out of the feature.

"With that in mind, I think the stalker element of it might get played back a bit, the other thing is you can only send the message to somebody once," said Goodman. "You can't follow it up with repeated information, it's just a one-time message and then once you delete it, you're kind of in the clear."

Incoming messages from people you don't know will filter in through your Social folder, along with other social media notifications. Goodman says parents can make sure their children fully understand the security features before logging on, but adds that the concerns may cause many to shy away from the new tool.

"We use Google+ mainly as a way to get found in our Google search results, I don't think this is something that we would be potentially looking at, especially because of the amount of backlash that there's been behind it. I just don't know how effective it would be as a tool."

Experts say only time will tell if the new feature takes off, becomes a new danger, or will end up in the cyber graveyard.

Most Watched Videos