Tag Archives: horse

I’ve Got 10 Kilos Of GOLD I Want To Share With You!

image My Australian friend Rod, a security developer executive, regularly forwards copies of scam emails that his company detects, through their various Internet  resources.

I’m very appreciative that Rod takes the time to do this, since it keeps me in the loop at the company level on email scams and malware threats. And,  it gives me a chance to LMAO – some of these emails are outrageously funny.

Every get one of those emails? Sure you have. In fact, you probably get a lot of emails similar to the one below, recently forwarded by Rod – this one is particularly ridiculous. But, that’s the point in using it as an illustrative example.

Anyone with an email address is bound to be bombarded with this type of scam email (including the misspellings, lack of punctuation, incorrect grammatical usage, etc.).

How are you doing sir/madam? My name is Mr. Twum a 25 year old man, please dont be surprise i got your email from yahoo. i have 10kilogram of AU RAW GOLD, i got this Gold as a beneficiary from my parent as their only son . i dont know much about Gold so i am here looking for someone who can lecture me on how i can sell the Gold and how much it worth at the market.

please note that i have all legal documentation from my late dad before he passed away and on one of the documents, It is said the specification of the gold is,

QUALITY : 22+Carat with a minimum

PURITY : 96% Or Better

Origin : Ghana.

And i am ready to send sample to you to test and see if it is Gold as i can read clearly.

if you so interested. have a nice day and enjoy your day

hope to hear from you soon

Opening this type of email is definitely not recommended (despite the humor), since, at a minimum, opening one lets the spammers/scammers know that your email address is “live”. Generally not a good idea, since this virtually guarantees you will receive a lot more spam.

We’ re all pretty curious, and spammers/scammers, being experts at social engineering – “the act of manipulating people into performing actions or divulging confidential information, for the purpose of fraud, or computer system access”, rely on this to manipulate victims into opening this type of email.

While there may be some dispute as to whether “curiosity killed the cat”, there is no dispute as to the likely outcome of following the instructions contained in emails of this type because of curiosity.

For those who are swept away by an overriding curiosity  – go ahead and click and then follow the instructions. But before you do, make sure you have:

A current backup CD/DVD or other media containing your irreplaceable files – you’re going to need it.

Your original operating system install disk – you’ll need this too.

Your system and peripherals driver disks. Without these you’re going to spend hours on the Internet locating (if your lucky), drivers that were written specifically for your hardware and peripherals.

You can save yourself all this trouble, and heartache, just by one simple action, or more properly; by a single inaction. Don’t click!

Scam emails like this are designed, and crafted, to seek out financial information from you, or from your computer, that can be used to steal your money and your identity. As well, they can be designed to install various types of malware  that can have drastic consequences for your system’s stability.

You may well be curious when it comes to emails like this, but don’t let your curiosity override your common sense. Security experts argue (none too successfully it seems), that a significant number of malware infections could be avoided if users stopped “just clicking haphazardly”, or opening the type of files that are clearly dangerous.

You may be lucky, and you may be able to recover control of your computer if your anti-malware applications are up to date, and the malware signature recognize the intruder as malware.

But I wouldn’t count on it. Often, anti-malware programs that rely on a definition database can be behind the curve in recognizing the newest threats.

It is beyond dispute that the Internet now fits the criteria of a world that is not just perceived to be, but is in fact, personally threatening to uninformed or casual Internet users. I could go on, but I think the message here is clear. Think carefully before you click.

Despite every warning under the sun, there are people who will open this type of email. And, in that group, there will be people who will respond. If you’re having trouble believing this – believe it. If this type of scam didn’t show results, we wouldn’t have to deal with them on a constant basis.

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Filed under cybercrime, Don't Get Scammed, Don't Get Hacked, Email, email scams, internet scams, Online Safety, spam, Windows Tips and Tools

Spam is a Pain in the Ass!

The following statistic bears repeating – last month (June, 09), over 90% of email was spam, and of this total more than 83% was sent our way by botnets. (Data from MessageLabs‘ June report).

Botnets or not, personally, I don’t really care where the spam comes from – it’s a major pain in the ass!

I operate multiple email accounts most of which I established 10/12 years ago. Recently, I setup a new email account on Gmail to allow readers of my WordPress site to contact me directly. Almost immediately, I noticed the type of Spam directed at this account was considerably different from the daily spam going to my long established accounts.

Generally, the spam aimed at my older email accounts is fairly harmless and not particularly dangerous, since most of it is calculated to attempt to sell me something I don’t want, and that I have absolutely no interest in.

While these emails are not harmless given that sending spam violates the Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) of almost all Internet Service Providers, it’s the phishing emails aimed at my relatively new Gmail account that causes me the most frustration.

The following graphic (this is only one day), clearly illustrates just how pervasive this type of phishing Spam is. Most of this spam has the following in common: notification that the reader has won a huge sums of money, or that they will have access to a huge sums of money but only after a payment of  hundreds of dollars.

Spam is pain in the ass

Click for larger.

As well, in almost every case the spammer requests the following type of personal information:

Your name

Your current address

Your phone number – both land line and cell

It seems to me that phishing spammers target new or relatively new email accounts, more often than well established accounts. And why not?

In a spammer’s view, I suspect, the theory is – an experienced Internet user is less likely to respond to this type of email, while the percentage of relatively new users who respond should be higher due to the new user’s inexperience. Without a doubt, there are some people, somewhere, who will respond to this nonsense.

Opening this type of email is definitely not recommended since, at a minimum, opening one lets the spammers/scammers know that your email address is “live”. Generally not a good idea, since this virtually guarantees you will receive a lot more spam.

You may well be curious when it comes to emails like this, but don’t let your curiosity override your common sense. Security experts argue (none too successfully it seems), that a significant number of malware infections could be avoided if users stopped “just clicking haphazardly” or opening the types of files and emails that are clearly dangerous.

You may be lucky, and you may be able to recover control of your computer if your anti-malware applications are up to date, and the malware signature recognize the intruder as malware. But I wouldn’t count on it. Often, anti-malware programs that rely on a definition database can be behind the curve in recognizing the newest threats.

It is beyond dispute that the Internet now fits the criteria of a world that is not just perceived to be, but is in fact, personally threatening to uninformed or casual Internet users. I could go on, but I think the message here is clear. Think carefully before you click on unsolicited emails.

Not clicking will ensure your safety and that these email will remain nothing more than a pain in the ass.

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Filed under Don't Get Scammed, Don't Get Hacked, Email, email scams, Interconnectivity, internet scams, Malware Advisories, Online Safety, Phishing, Windows Tips and Tools

You Won $1,230,310! Still Believe in Fairy Tales?

Every get one of those emails? Sure you have. In fact, you probably get a lot of emails just like this. Anyone with an email address is bound to be bombarded with this type of scam email.

Spam Lottery

(Click graphic to view larger)

Opening this type of email is definitely not recommended since, at a minimum, opening one lets the spammers/scammers know that your email address is “live”. Generally not a good idea, since this virtually guarantees you will receive a lot more spam.

We’ re all pretty curious, and spammers/scammers being experts at social engineering – “the act of manipulating people into performing actions or divulging confidential information, for the purpose of fraud, or computer system access”, (Wikipedia), rely on this to manipulate victims into opening this type of email.

While there may be some dispute as to whether “curiosity killed the cat”, there is no dispute as to the likely outcome of following the instructions contained in emails of this type because of curiosity.

For those who are swept away by an overriding curiosity  – go ahead and click and then follow the instructions. But before you do, make sure you have:

A current backup CD/DVD or other media containing your irreplaceable files – you’re probably going to need it.

Your original operating system install disk – you’ll need this too.

Your system and peripherals driver disks. Without these you’re going to spend hours on the Internet locating (if your lucky), drivers that were written specifically for your hardware and peripherals.

You can save yourself all this trouble, and heartache, just by one simple action, or more properly; by a single inaction. Don’t click!

Scam emails like this are designed, and crafted, to seek out financial information from you, or from your computer, that can be used to steal your money. As well, they can be designed to install various types of malware on your computer that can have drastic consequences for your system’s stability.

You may well be curious when it comes to emails like this, but don’t let your curiosity override your common sense. Security experts argue (none too successfully it seems), that a significant number of malware infections could be avoided if users stopped “just clicking haphazardly” or opening the types of files that are clearly dangerous.

You may be lucky, and you may be able to recover control of your computer if your anti-malware applications are up to date, and the malware signature recognize the intruder as malware. But I wouldn’t count on it. Often, anti-malware programs that rely on a definition database can be behind the curve in recognizing the newest threats.

It is beyond dispute that the Internet now fits the criteria of a world that is not just perceived to be, but is in fact, personally threatening to uninformed or casual Internet users. I could go on but I think the message here is clear. Think carefully before you click.

Minimum Security Precautions:

Don’t run programs of unknown origin

Disable hidden filename extensions

Keep all applications (including your operating system) patched

Turn off your computer or disconnect from the network when not in use

Disable Java, JavaScript, and ActiveX if possible

Disable scripting features in email programs

Make regular backups of critical data

Make a boot disk in case your computer is damaged or compromised

Turn off file and printer sharing on the computer

Install a personal firewall on the computer

Install anti-virus and anti-spyware software and ensure it is configured to automatically update when you are connected to the Internet

Ensure the anti-virus software scans all e-mail attachments

Be proactive when it comes to your computer’s security; make sure you have adequate software based protection to reduce the chances that your machine will become infected.

If you are unsure of you current security software, then checkout “Need Free Security Programs? – 10 Of The Best!” on this site.

4 Comments

Filed under Don't Get Hacked, Email, email scams, Freeware, Interconnectivity, internet scams, Malware Advisories, Online Safety, Phishing, System Security, trojans, Viruses, Windows Tips and Tools, worms

Is It You in This Video? – You Don’t Want to Find Out!

If you receive an email that asks you “is it you in this video?”, and you’re curious – go ahead and click. But before you do, make sure you have:

A current backup CD/DVD or other media containing your irreplaceable files – your probably going to need it.

Your original operating system install disk – you’ll need this too.

Your system and peripherals driver disks. Without these you’re going to spend hours on the Internet locating (if your lucky), drivers that were written specifically for your peripherals.

You can save yourself all this trouble, and heartache, just by one simple action, or more properly; by a single inaction. Don’t click!

As is usual with malicious emails, (and this is a malicious email), clicking on the embedded link will begin the process of infecting your computer with malware, which could put at risk, your financial and other confidential information, not to mention your computer and its operating system.

Scam emails like this are designed, and crafted, to seek out financial information on your computer that can be used to steal your money, or they can be designed to install various types of malware on your computer that can have drastic consequences for your system’s stability.

You may well be curious when it comes to emails like this, but don’t let your curiosity override your common sense. Security experts argue (none to successfully it seems), that a significant number of malware infections could be avoided if users stopped “just clicking haphazardly” or opening the types of files that are clearly dangerous.

You may be lucky, and you may be able to recover control of your computer if your anti-malware applications are up to date, and the malware signature recognize the intruder as malware. But I wouldn’t count on it. Often, anti-malware programs that rely on a definition database can be behind the curve in recognizing the newest threats.

It is beyond dispute that the Internet now fits the criteria of a world that is not just perceived to be, but is in fact, personally threatening to uninformed or casual Internet users. I could go on but I think the message here is clear. Think carefully before you click.

As I have pointed out in the past (I’m sure regular readers of this Blog must be tired of seeing this), the following are actions you can take to protect your computer system, your money and your identity:

Install an Internet Browser add-on such as WOT (my personal favorite), which provides detailed test results on a site’s safety; protecting you from security threats including spyware, adware, spam, viruses, browser exploits, and online scams.

As an addition to your existing malware applications, download and install ThreatFire 3 (provided free by PC Tools), which blocks mal-ware, including zero-day threats, by analyzing program behavior and it does a stellar job. This is one of the security applications that forms part of my front line defenses. I have found it to have a high success rate at blocking mal-ware based on analysis of behavior.

In addition:

Don’t open unknown email attachments

Don’t run programs of unknown origin

Disable hidden filename extensions

Keep all applications (including your operating system) patched

Turn off your computer or disconnect from the network when not in use

Disable Java, JavaScript, and ActiveX if possible

Disable scripting features in email programs

Make regular backups of critical data

Make a boot disk in case your computer is damaged or compromised

Turn off file and printer sharing on the computer

Install a personal firewall on the computer

Install anti-virus and anti-spyware software and ensure it is configured to automatically update when you are connected to the Internet

Ensure the anti-virus software scans all e-mail attachments

Be proactive when it comes to your computer’s security; make sure you have adequate software based protection to reduce the chances that your machine will become infected.

If you are unsure of you current security software, then checkout “Need Free Security Programs? – 10 Of The Best!” on this site.

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Filed under Browser add-ons, Email, Firefox Add-ons, Free Security Programs, Freeware, Interconnectivity, Internet Safety, Internet Safety Tools, internet scams, Malware Advisories, Online Safety, Phishing, Safe Surfing, Software, Spyware - Adware Protection, System Security, trojans, Viruses, Windows Tips and Tools

Scam Email Trojan Alert – Another Obama Sex Tape

Some time ago, on this site, I wrote “Now that Barack Obama has been officially nominated to carry the Democrats banner into the upcoming U.S. presidential election, be prepared for a deluge of spam scams perpetrated by cyber-criminals based on his popularity on the one hand, and our need to be titillated on the other hand, to leverage their malicious activities”.

One such spam email campaign is already in operation which provides a link purportedly leading to a video of Barack Obama disclosing his transsexual affairs. I know, you’re asking yourself – who could possibly believe this kind of nonsense?

The simple answer is this – cyber-criminals know that by sending out countless millions of this type of email, enough people will respond, by clicking on the embedded link, that it will produce millions of dollars in easy pickings.

So not surprisingly, today we have reports of another Obama sex tape email scam. Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos, a well known developer and vendor of security software and hardware, reports on his Blog of another scam email that includes the wording “United States Senator for Illinois Barack Obama in 2007 was travel to Ukraine and have sex action with many ukrainian girls!” (sic)

According to Sophos, clicking on the enclosed link to view the video, will lead to the downloading and installation of the Mal/Hupig-D Trojan horse onto your computer.

As always, emails claiming that US presidential candidate Barack Obama was involved in a sex scandal, should be automatically treated as a threat against your computer.

Follow the tips below to protect yourself against these and other threats.

Don’t open emails that come from untrusted sources.

Don’t run files that you receive via email without making sure of their origin.

Don’t click links in emails. If they come from a known source, type them on the browser’s address bar. If they come from an untrusted source, simply ignore them, as they could take you to a web designed to download malware onto your computer.

Keep your computer protected. Install a security solution and keep it up-to-date.

4 Comments

Filed under Email, Interconnectivity, Internet Safety, internet scams, Malware Advisories, Online Safety, Safe Surfing, Spyware - Adware Protection, System Security, trojans, Viruses, Windows Tips and Tools