Google Trends, the most popular and widely used tool to determine search trends, was hacked early Thursday morning.
Politics Daily has reported that at approximately 9am Eastern Daylight Time users who visited Google Trends came across random and unrelated search titles including "pet stores", "dentists", "gift shops", "gyms", dry cleaning", "malls", "fried chicken", "debt counselling", "post offices", "gas stations" and more.
Instead of the normal list of hot topics being searched daily, users were greeted by a racially offensive term, "lol n....." at the top of the list. This phrase was removed immediately after discovery.
The rest of the useless phrases were removed gradually.
A Google representative has stated that the company is looking into a report of a possible hack.
This is not the first time, Google Trends has been hacked - the trending tool has been hacked on several occasions since its launch in 2006.
In 2008, a swastika appeared at in the number one position, followed by the phrase "f... you google" almost a week later.
Trends is an automated tool that analyses Google web searches to help media organisation learn about consumer behaviour.