Posts Tagged ‘#spam’

LinkedIn Data Breach

News, Warnings | Posted by Dennis June 8th, 2012

I noticed a lot of spam in the last few days that was making it to my Inbox.  This is unusual; most of the time my spam filters catch this junk and remove it.  It turns out that LinkedIn got hacked recently, along with eHarmony and Lastfm.com.  If anyone on those sites had your email address, you may have gotten the same deluge of crap mail.  Most of those were “phishing” mails, trying to get credit card or other financial info so they could steal from you.  What to do?  First of all DO NOT CLICK LINKS IN ANY EMAILS you receive.  Go straight to the sites, if you have an account, and CHANGE YOUR PASSWORD.  Make sure you follow rules for strong passwords; 8 characters or more with a mix of letters, numbers, and special characters.  This is a storm of data theft that probably isn’t over yet.  Stay Tuned!   (Thanks to the Agence France-Presse for the great article)

Twitter Spam

News, Warnings | Posted by Dennis December 21st, 2011

If you use Twitter, you might have noticed a recent increase in spam activity.  If not, you should check any recent Followers for their links.  It’s probably gonna pipe you out to some Adult Dating site that looks more like porn than anything legitimate.  Hopefully Twitter will put a stop to it soon, but in the meanwhile you can help; in the notification that you get there is a link to Report as Abuse.  It will block the user from your account and send the Twitter folks a notification.  Here’s a link  to the Twitter abuse policies page that describes other abuses as well.  It’s sad that no matter what, cool technology gets ruined by crap like this. 

Email Privacy

Helpful Hints, Warnings | Posted by Dennis September 20th, 2011

With all the spam and junk mail out there, it’s a good idea to keep a few things in mind for email etiquette.  1) Business email should include a confidentiality notice to legally protect the contents (the easiest way to do this is to put it in your signature).  2) If you send to a large group, or forward FROM a large group, remove extraneous addresses from the body, and email it to YOURSELF.  Then put the list in the BCC line (this protects the recipient’s privacy)  3) To prevent getting filtered by spam blockers, I encourage my clients to use Rich Text or Plain Text rather than HTML format for sending.  In Outlook the default settings can be found in Tools, Options, Mail Format tab.  Next time:  Encrypting your email.

Spam

Helpful Hints, News, Warnings | Posted by Dennis September 8th, 2011

SpamThe battle of spam rages on.  Umm, that’s junk email, not meat byproducts.  :-) The latest trick is hacking your online email accounts, and spamming your address list (so USE STRONG PASSWORDS!!!).  This spam often sends you to the “Canadian Health&Care Mall”, which tells me THEY NEED TO PROSECUTE THIS COMPANY for the nonsense.  There have been other, significant arrests that helped stop the problem; Oleg Nikolaenko in 2010 and Robert Soloway in 2007 were considered responsible for up to HALF the spam in circulation across the globe.  My customers often ask how they can remedy the junk mail.  In short; 1) make sure your service’s spam filter is turned on (almost all of them have adjustable spam filters now)  2) if it’s legitimate junk mail, they are REQUIRED BY LAW to include an opt-out message at the bottom for you to easily get off the list, and stop the ads.  3) Only give your email address to those you trust.  You can create an alternative mail account if you want to use that for filling out silly Internet stuff that require it.  Overall, I have to say that the spam problem has gone down dramatically since Bill Gates proclaimed war on it a few years back.  The Outlook Junk filter ROCKS!

Blog plugins

Helpful Hints, News | Posted by Dennis March 4th, 2011

Ok, so you got WordPress installed, but that’s not the end of the story.  WP has lots of extras that can be installed, called plugins.  One essential add-on that you’ll want right away is a Spam Filter.  It turns out that lots of people are trying to make money by piping traffic from your blog to their site, so they post all kinds of stuff.  They’re VERY TRICKY about it, and a lot of them seem like legitimate comments.  But if you read them carefully, you’ll see that they’re very generic, like GREAT POST! or something similar.  This garbage can easily be eliminated.  The most popular tool is Akismet.  I’ve been using it for about a month now, and it has ZAPPED ALL SPAM.  :-)