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Google search problems
Revised: 21 May 2020

On Wednesday night, we were notified of problems with the Google search, initially from Google.com but later even with our own website search box. Although the searches pulled up the correct URL, these searches typically do a redirect, and the redirect had been "hijacked" to go to a junk site. This is unusual for us because we are pretty intense about updating our software and using anti-virus software on a regular basis.

Ultimately we determined that the problem was an outdated plugin for application software used by one of our developers. They thought their software was current, but for technical reasons, it turned out not to be. The "malware" was cleaned and the problem appears to be fixed. We apologize for any inconvenience.

The lessons learned appear to be: (1) Keep your software updated. We are going to task someone with checking, once a quarter, what software and plugins / add-ons staff are using, what version is being used and whether this is the most recent version; (2) Use anti-virus / anti-malware software once a week and verify that this is done; (3) When in trouble, ask the opinion of everyone that is knowledgeable. In our case, we talked to half a dozen people, all of whom contributed to the solution.

Nat Pernick, M.D.