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Classmates received spam

Forums: General Discussion
Created on: 12/06/08 08:45 PM Views: 1467 Replies: 7
Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 8:45 PM

I had an issue today with a bunch of classmates receiving a spam e-mail. This is what it said.

(I joined this site to catch up with old friends, Now I am being SPAMED:
Hello Maria Gebauer,

I know this Letter will come to you as a surprise, though I do not intend to embarrass you. I am Barr. David Agbana, personal attorney to late Mr. Richard Gebauer, nationality of your country who lost his life in a ghastly auto accident with his wife and their only son along Kara-Lome express road on the 11th November 2004.

I have contacted you to assist in repatriating the money left behind by my client before it is confiscated or declared unserviceable by the bank where this deposit valued at Nine million dollars( US$9 million dollars) is lodged. This bank has issued me a notice to contact the next of kin, or the account will be confiscated.

My proposition to you is to seek your consent to present you as the next-of-kin and beneficiary of my named client, since you have the same last name, so that the proceeds of this account can be paid to you. Then we can share the amount on a mutually agreed-upon percentage. All legal documents to back up your claim as my client's next-of-kin will be provided.All I require is your honest cooperation to enable us see this transaction through.

This will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from many breach of the law. If this business proposition offends your moral values,do accept my apology. I must use this opportunity to implore you to exercise the utmost indulgence to keep this matter extraordinary confidential, whatever your decision, while I await your prompt response.Please contact me at once to indicate your interest on my private email address:

Best regards,
David Agbana

Don't need friends that bad. )

Help...What do I do. I think the guy created a password under the other guys name, but how was he able to send the e-mail to these people?

Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 9:09 PM - Response #1

Are you positive that he received this message via email? Most such spam comes from profile hijackers who then send the spam messages via the "Send a private message" function.

Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 9:21 PM - Response #2

So is there any way to stop someone from hijacking a profile?

Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 9:27 PM - Response #3

Hi Rick,
I am investigating the situation now, and have asked those involved to forward the info to me. I did find the classmate's name that the person used and deleted it. If it was a hijack, is there anything I can do about it besides keeping a careful eye on new classmates?

Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 10:23 PM - Response #4

Two answers for you here:

1) If a Classmate Profile is left public, anybody from the outside can email that Classmate. So a Profile doesn't necessarily have to be hijacked for a spam email like this to sneak through. We do have pretty good spam protection that works in the background and it applies to Classmate email whether the Profile is protected from the public or not. But unfortunately this spam mail slipped through the cracks. No spam filter is perfect. Should this same email continue to come in to this or other Classmates let me know, and we may be able to add something to screen for this specific message.

2) You did the right thing. The best way to discourage hijackers is to immediately delete their "work" by deleting the Classmate's name, and then readding it to your site. Most hijackers will go away pretty quickly. Hijacking is the final security loophole we're aware of and we're working on addressing this problem right now. See this thread for more info about that.

Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 10:47 PM - Response #5

This guy just rejoined the site again under another classmates name. I again deleted him. He keeps putting the name Agbana in the married last name field and both times he has chosen a classmate with the name david.

Saturday, December 6, 2008 at 11:32 PM - Response #6

Delete the Classmate name immediately every time, and then readd the name. This person will likely get tired of this game and give up pretty quickly. Most hijackers are looking for much bigger things than they'll ever find on your site. For instance, the ability to mass email a whole buch of people at the same time, which they'll not find on your site. Or credit card numbers or personal information, which they'll also not find on your site. When they realize there's no benefit whatsoever to them to hijacking into your site they'll give up. Especially if you keep deleting their account and resetting it immediately. The new Preferences area will solve this of course. Dave Kauffman is working on it now.

Edited 12/07/08 12:10 AM
Sunday, December 7, 2008 at 12:07 AM - Response #7

Thanks Brad & Rick! I am hoping this person will give up soon. I also use stat counter on my site, so I am able to see what exactly people are doing on my site and even their IP address. If I continue to have issues or notice a pattern, I will let you know.

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