O Free market deleted almost all ads that sold GoogleDrive unlimited and “lifetime” for values between R $ 6 and R $ 40: they violated the terms of the marketplace because they offered the service in ways prohibited by Google. Some vendors gave access to a G Suite folder, while others created an irregular educational account to access G Suite for Education.
On Thursday (19), the Tecnoblog found about 130 items in Mercado Livre when searching for “unlimited Google Drive”. We contacted the company for more details, and it deleted virtually all ads.
“Mercado Livre informs that the ads in question were downloaded for violating the Terms and Conditions of use of the platform, which apply to all users, buyers and sellers, and their acceptance is mandatory at the time of registration,” says company in a statement.
In addition, Mercado Livre affirms that “it rejects the misuse of its platform and that it removes irregular content when receiving a report – either through the report button in all ads, or through its Property Protection Program Intellectual Property (PPPI) ”.
This type of ad also appeared on social networks; in the example below, there was a promise of “fast delivery”:
Someone explain to me what an unlimited Google Drive is like and the guy still delivers it at home? Does it deliver Google? The cloud? pic.twitter.com/iv3w6mgbTa
– Leandro Santos | Mussum Alive (@MussumAlive) May 18, 2019
Advertisers resell unlimited G Suite space
exist two types ad with unlimited Google Drive. In the first one, the seller acquires a G Suite account in Business or Enterprise mode, which costs from R $ 45.90 per user per month and offers unlimited space on Google Drive.
Once this is done, the seller offers the service on the Free Market or on its own e-commerce sites, for values ranging between R $ 6 and R $ 40, promising “lifetime” and “no monthly fees” access. (Since last year, Mercado Livre stopped selling products under R $ 6 to increase sales.)
If a user closes a deal, they must send the email registered in their Google account, usually a Gmail address. In this way, the seller releases access to a Shared drive with unlimited space:
“You will not receive any account or password, as soon as you make the payment we will contact you asking for the email where we should include unlimited storage”, said one of the ads removed by Mercado Livre.
In this case, the G Suite administrator can have access to all that is sent to Drive, which represents a privacy issue. In addition, Google prohibits this practice in its terms of service, so it overturns the accounts that do this – which interrupts access to files in the cloud.
Sellers have .edu addresses for G Suite for Education
In the second type of ad, the salesperson creates an e-mail address with an educational domain, ending in something like @ college.edu. This account is used to access the G Suite for Education, free service that offers unlimited Drive space.
It is possible to create a .edu account through online systems that fail and accept entries made with false data, using tricks like address, phone number and identity generators. This is the case with OpenCCC and CCCApply, for example, offered by California Community Colleges.
“This is not a Gmail account, but a .edu account that will have access to Google Drive”, explained one of the ads removed by Mercado Livre. “For this announcement, you will receive a random username (no choice, no option to change), which can be in name or number format.”
In this case, you will be the administrator for G Suite for Education, so no one else will have access to your files. In fact, you can even create Team Drives for others users, as shown in the image below. However, if Google finds out the fraud – which it usually does – the account will be blocked.
Google prohibits resale of G Suite products
The G Suite terms of service and Suite for Educationprohibit reselling Google services, unless expressly authorized. This practice is tantamount to a breach of contract, and your account may be suspended because of this.
G Suite customers are prohibited from “selling, reselling, renting (or functional equivalent) the services to a third party (unless expressly authorized in this agreement)”. The terms warn that, “if Google becomes aware of a breach of the contract by the end user, it may specifically ask the customer to suspend the applicable end user account; if the customer does not comply with this request, Google itself may do so ”.
In its turn, the Free Market has a contract what prohibits advertising products “that violate the rights of third parties”. If this occurs, the company “may warn, suspend, temporarily or permanently, a User’s account, cancel its ads or apply a sanction that has a negative impact on its reputation”.
“Google Drive unlimited” ads are not exclusive to Brazil. They have been on eBay for years, offered by US and UK sellers with “free international delivery”. In some cases, you even get 5 TB on the MicrosoftOneDrive as a free gift.
O Tecnoblog contacted Google, which has yet to comment. The company sells Google One cloud storage plans starting at 100 GB for R $ 6.99 per month.