Google fixes image search after 'car crash' bug

Google fixes image search after 'car crash' bug

Summary: UPDATED. The search giant said it wished it served up "micropigs" instead, after a Russian car crash image dogged users of its image search engine.

TOPICS: Google, Security
Even "Hello Kitty" isn't immune from the car crash cache bug. (Image: ZDNet/CBS Interactive)

If Google Images was throwing up some interesting, albeit perhaps worrying results, you were not alone.

Early on Tuesday, numerous reports began to flood Twitter, Reddit, and other social sites, including Google's own support forums, from concerned Google Images users that an issue was causing nearly every image pulled back to be an apparent car accident in Russia.

Users on Reddit suggested it was not an isolated incident, while others on Twitter were also seeing the repeated image of the apparent crash.

It was widespread, affecting all Google encrypted searches (which is now turned on by default) across multiple domains, including and, among other English-language sites.

People from Canada, Germany, and Brazil cited similar issues, suggesting the problem was centralized and not a geographical issue.

Not everyone was affected, however. 

Google said in an emailed statement to ZDNet early afternoon: "Oops."

The issue is now fixed, the company said, calling it an accident. "The least we could have done was show everyone micropigs instead."

For now, it's not clear exactly what the issue was, but Google hinted that it was a bug, rather than anything else.

Google's own status site did not show any outages or issues, even after the bug was fixed in the early afternoon.

Topics: Google, Security

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • If you search for "hello kitty"

    ... you pretty much deserve what you get.

    Is it fixed yet?
  • I just googled pantera detomaso

    My favorite car from my youth, never drove one sadly.

    I got numerous images of my youthful dream car, nothing else.
  • I just googled

    MILFs using In Private mode and the images were spot on. No car crashes.
  • I just googled

    RUSSIAN CAR CRASH and got a bunch of Hello Kitty stuff.
  • The issue is now fixed, the company said, calling it an accident

    An accident, huh? Yeah, I think we kinda got that part.
    • some sites reported it was hacked

      It's their way of saying "we were not hacked, it's an accident"
  • Micropigs - oops

    I clicked on the micropigs link in the article, and got a page full of cute very small pigs. Except, also, in the middle of the page, is a picture of actor Hugh Laurie holding a plate of BACON and looking very hungry. I thought it was pretty funny, but I'll bet a lot of folks find it non-PC...
  • .

    In Soviet Russia, Google searches you!