Friday, April 11, 2008

Virus Alert

Forgive the public service announcement, but I so rarely have problems with viruses anymore I thought I'd mention this one.

Just got what looked like one of those phishing spams supposedly from PayPal asking me to click on a link to go to my account and update my account info. Strange coincidence as I hadn't gotten one of those in a while and, just this morning, had gone to PayPal to transfer money to my bank account.

I noticed right away, though, that the actual link of the url was different than the one showing in the e-mail. For those of you that don't know, if you put your cursor on a link in the e-mail, the actual url should show up. This url didn't even have any mention of PayPal.

So, figuring it was some phishing spam, trying to get personal info, I went to my Eudora e-mail program to forward it to spoof at paypal.com. That's where you should send those things and PayPal will try to shut them down. Problem is, it doesn't work with my Yahoo mail program so I have to forward it with Eudora.

When it downloads I tried to forward it but kept getting an error message that the "file can't be found", or some such. Then I realize my Zonelabs Anti- Virus had opened and was minimized. Opened that up and it had multiple virus alerts for the e-mail.

Eudora wouldn't let me delete the e-mail so I had to go to Zonelabs Anti-Virus and delete the virus first. Then, when I went to clear out the mailbox the e-mail was in, I get the message my Junk mailbox was screwed up somehow and couldn't be opened. I had Eudora create another junk box and checked my inbox. Inbox was screwed up, too, and couldn't be opened. I had another created but lost the four or so e-mails I had in the old inbox.

Anyway, problem taken care of on this end, for now. Just be careful of messages that claim to be from PayPal and, if you don't already have virus protection, get some.

5 Comments:

At 9:12 AM, Blogger Carol said...

Ignore these emails saying to check your account. I get hundreds of these a week and delete them furiously. You can also sign up with Equifax to monitor any changes in your bank accounts.

 
At 10:14 AM, Blogger Fred said...

Well, I guess you can delete them, but I forward the PayPal ones to spoof@paypal.com so they can try and shut down that guys doing it.

They'll send you an e-mail confirming that they didn't send the e-mail and tell you they'll try and shut the guys down. One of the e-mails I forwarded to them turned out to be a legitimate PayPal e-mail, so they do send out mails on occasion.

There was also some government e-mail address you're supposed to be able to send fraudulent e-mails to. I did that a few times but never got any response like I do with PayPal. So, I checked what I figured the web site should have been for that agency by using the last part of the e-mail.

It was spam@uce.gov. I tried www.uce.gov and got a Page Not Found message. I figured it must have been some hoax I fell for. Maybe not. Who knows?

I read somewhere that any e-mails supposedly from the Internal Revenue Service saying you're owed money, a refund, or they need info from you should be forwarded to the IRS. The IRS doesn't communicate such things via e-mail so those are phishing attempts.

I've sent about three in to phishing@irs.gov. I don't believe I ever received a response from any of the mails I forwarded to them, either.

 
At 7:37 PM, Blogger Rose said...

Ebay now gives all members an email account, and any email that was generated by them will be in your mailbox there. So, we can always check. I think that also applies to PayPal emails as they are owned by ebay now. They did this in direct response to those spoof emails you are talking about, and it seems like a good solution.

I think you can also send spoof/phishing emails to spoof at ebay.com, spoof at paypal.com and you could also send it to spamcop, if they are still around.

 
At 8:11 AM, Anonymous Chris Crawford said...

The universal notice for all phishing should be forwarded to:

reportphishing@antiphishing.org

... but you're right, Fred, they don't acknowledge receipt.

Online fraud such as this still takes in a HUGE amount every year.

 
At 8:26 AM, Blogger Fred said...

Thanks for the heads up and that e-mail address. It led me to their web site which I'll have to spend more time checking out:
http://www.antiphishing.org/

 

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