A new bug has been discovered in Google search which makes the search engine return porn results in response to queries which it may deem impossible.

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Google takes pride in being the quickest and most reliable search engine online. That doesn’t mean it’s security is fool-proof. A Quora member has recently revealed that a Google bug makes the search engine treat different equations as impossible queries and then return porn links in search results.


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Some security experts have cited that this is a result of some bug in Google search as well as ill-meant Search Engine Optimization (SEO). For instance, if you try to search up ‘-4^(1/4)’ on Google, it yields the right result which would be ‘-1.41421356237′ but at the same time, it also returns a lot of porn links.

Once the discovery came to light, a Google engineer named Jeremy Hoffman responded by stating,

“Hi, I’m a Google search engineer. Anon User and Nicholas Moyne did some excellent analysis. As a web search query, [-4^(1/4)] is interpreted like [-4 "1 4"], as in “Find me pages which contain a 1 next to a 4, but which do not contain a 4.” This should return zero results, because it is impossible to satisfy both requirements. However, we have uncovered a bug that causes some web pages to “match” these contradictory queries.”

Apparently, a number of black-hat SEO fellows have taken a number of impossible-query scenarios and rather than let Google return 0 results, they have pitched their links as potential valid answers. As a result, Google returns those links in its search.

Thankfully, Google has cited that it is working on the bug and will soon have it removed. Also, the porn results do not appear with the ‘Safe Mode’ on.

Source: Quora

Courtesy: The Verge

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  On February 9, 2013(1 year, 5 months ago.)

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