Google Search error code 403 barring users from accessing the service, issue referred for investigation

There has been a bunch of complaints recently about Google Search not functioning as intended. Users say that they’re unable to search anything on Google as it results in an Error 403.

Users have also stated that they’re able to access the Google site, enter the search query into the text field, and everything just fine. However, hitting enter after inputting a query results in a “403. That’s an error.” message.


Hello, since yesterday I’ve been getting 403 Errors (Forbidden) from Google Search when connected to the CA Toronto server. Other servers and other Google-owned sites like YouTube/Gmail work fine.

Every time I use google search, it results in an “Error 403 (Forbidden)!!1” but I can click bookmarks and navigate the web fine with exact web addresses. This is on Windows 10.

Going by the complaints, almost every platform is affected – be it Windows, Android, or even macOS. Also, the issue isn’t limited to a particular browser. This establishes the fact that the issue is actually at Google’s end.

So what exactly does the 403 error code stand for? Well, for starters, it is also known as the 403 forbidden error, or HTTP 403 error code, and is issued by a server if a client browser lacks the required access rights.

A screenshot of the error

This does suggest that the issue has to be at the client’s end. However, it’s usually not the case as the error 403 mostly arises due to incorrect server settings.

Now, one can’t really be too sure about the true cause of the issue in this case. But it is still safe to assume, as already mentioned above, that the issue is due to a mess up at Google’s (the server) end.

This is evident from a recent acknowledgment about the same:


From the above, it is clear that the matter has been escalated, and hopefully, the Google team is already looking into the issue as we speak.

Therefore, if all goes well, we should see the error vanish soon and you may continue Google searching seamlessly to your heart’s content!

Nonetheless, it is important to highlight here that Google processes over 3.5 billion searches per day, and judging by the proportion of the number of complaints, the issue does seem to be limited to a small userbase.

Still, a search giant like Google simply cannot afford to have even the tiniest of glitches.

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Zohaib Ahmed

Simply love being surrounded by technology as it's a constant reminder of how far humans have advanced as a race. Every new development feels exciting, which I convey to others through writing. And after a day's work, gaming just feels therapeutic.