D. Cooper Stevenson
September 23, 2010 0

Spammers and the Mothers Who Love Them

By in Information Technology

Spam messages purported to come from a person on your contact list is becoming a problem. You receive a message, look at the sender and think, “oh, I received a message from my friend.” The trouble is that instead of a friendly greeting you receive a (sometimes offensive) advertisement from a mass-mailer, a.k.a. a “spammer.”

This happens because either a) the sender’s mail was infected by malware on their PC or b) the message was “spoofed” with your friend’s email address by the spammer using an infected computer that happens to have your friend in their contact list.

Unfortunately, the end result is the same, often too is the solution: the sender needs to change she or he’s email address.
To track down the problem, first look in your “Sent Items” folder to see if your account actually sent the message. This happens as infected computers (the sender’s laptop, etc.) was “taken hostage” and is now sending emails out to recipients in the sender’s contact list. If you (the sender) find that these messages were sent by your computer then you’ll need to disinfect your system.

Second, make sure your login credentials are strong: change your password to at least seven characters with at least a number (not at the end) and a special character (%&*#) or two. Look to change your login’s secret questions and answers also.

Third, as mentioned above, scan and disinfect your machine if you find that the messages were sent from your account.

Finally, it is best to change your address. Let everyone on your contact list know that you’re now using a new address.

For parting thoughts I was to write something like, “overall, spammers cost us millions… etc.” but in the final analysis, it’s more than that–spammers are a nuisance, they are sometimes even hurtful. They need to be dealt with and stopped.

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