Author Topic: virus/trojan warning  (Read 2930 times)

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biggfredd

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virus/trojan warning
« on: January 10, 2012, 02:31:16 AM »
I've received "Hi, how are you, try this program to make a lot of money" type emails from two separate known sources.  One was a hotmail address, who figures someone hacked hotmail, the other was att.

Check your machine and change your passwords, just in case.


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stone

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2012, 03:17:42 AM »
A couple weeks ago I received a few of those too. I thought they looked suspious so I emailed the sender as several people did and found out they were totally unaware they were being sent.  I do know that one was from a hotmail  and one was from att (bellsouth.net).

springintoscooters

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2012, 02:54:31 AM »
AT&T also supports webmail, so the webmail hack is suspect in both cases. According to Kim Komando, there is a new program that allows hackers to try about 80,000 possible passwords and since unlike Gmail, neither AT&T nor Hotmail lock out or even challenge mulitple attempts, so anyone with a webmail account may wind up becoming the "source" of these messages. Watch your inbox for bounce notices. They are often your first sign as the hackers use any address you've ever sent a web mail to. Read the headers carefully, that will confirm whether it was your webmail account or your e-mail client that was compromised. And most importantly, change passwords if you even suspect that someone else might have it.

Check your webmail account periodically, even if you don't use it often. If you see suspicious looking messages in your web sent box, change your password immediately. Fortunately, these guys seldom try to take over the web accounts they hack, but you still don't want them coming back, although until the webmail providers up their security, there's no real defense against a program that will just keep guessing until it gets it right.   
« Last Edit: January 11, 2012, 03:05:55 AM by springintoscooters »
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eotrg2

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2012, 01:55:59 PM »
there's no real defense against a program that will just keep guessing until it gets it right.   

au contraire - strong passwords - mix of upper case, lower case, and special characters.

biggfredd

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2012, 05:13:37 PM »
Look at youtube URLs for an example. Even without special characters (which some sites can't handle), an eight character password using UC, LC and numbers has 218,340,105,584,896 possible results.  That's more than our gubmint spends.  Testing 80,000 of them at a time would take 2,729,251,319 (2.7 billion) tries.
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springintoscooters

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2012, 06:32:00 PM »
And that leads to the OTHER risk, having to write down passwords that are too complex to remember. Still doesn't justify webmail clients allowing so many attempts without challenge that even moderately strong passwords are broken.
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springintoscooters

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2012, 06:46:09 PM »
Two more rules: check out suspicious mail before going public with them. Be SURE where the come from before recommending a cure, there's no sense lulling people into a false sense of security by fixing the wrong problem and follow the common sense rule, if it looks too good to be true, just ignore it. Don't share it with others so they can get on the compromised list and this is true even if the deal that's too good to be true comes from someone you know and it wasn't the result of an e-mail hack.

An e-mail in your inbox that isn't from the person it says it's from got there one of three ways, by pop 3 client hijack, which is much rarer than people think because it was the method that got all the publicity when it was discovered (which is why nobody uses Outlook Express anymore), there's spoofing, faking the header information, and there's web mail hacking. Only carefully examination of the full header says which method was used. Jumping to conclusions doesn't help and can hurt when you take wrong corrective action, unless you're willing to change all your e-mail passwords every time a piece of spam shows up.

And lastly, here's the solution that works for most people just fine, when a piece of spam turns up in your inbox, just delete it and get on with your life.
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eotrg2

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2012, 06:57:09 PM »
Well if I _"NEEDED"_to_write" my password down, you would probably die trying to get it. Because I'm gonna shoot ya when you break into my abode, or temporary abode.

Don't write passwords down PERIOD, just follow the KISS principle.

springintoscooters

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #8 on: January 11, 2012, 07:16:01 PM »
Precisely, complex enough to not be the easiest in the world, but still has to be easy enough to remember. I've seen passwords that rate "Strong" on complexity meters get cracked. Gmail has the answer, if you miss your password more than three times, you can keep trying, but you also have to solve a Captcha puzzle.
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biggfredd

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #9 on: January 11, 2012, 10:42:08 PM »
And that leads to the OTHER risk, having to write down passwords that are too complex to remember. Still doesn't justify webmail clients allowing so many attempts without challenge that even moderately strong passwords are broken.
How much trouble would you have remembering s5Pr8i9N1G?
« Last Edit: January 11, 2012, 10:44:19 PM by biggfredd »
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springintoscooters

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2012, 03:33:13 AM »
The passwords that were hacked were about that complex.
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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2012, 06:28:10 AM »
I've received "Hi, how are you, try this program to make a lot of money" type emails from two separate known sources.  One was a hotmail address, who figures someone hacked hotmail, the other was att.

Check your machine and change your passwords, just in case.


Additional info added to SpringIntoScooter's post:

Sometimes emails are "made" to look like they are coming from a working email.
Check the headers (this will include the IP, country origin and how the email account has been setup to look like it's from a person)

http://www.emailaddressmanager.com/tips/header.html

The email header is the information that travels with every email, containing details about the sender, route and receiver.

It is like a flight ticket: it can tell you who booked it (who sent the email), the departure information (when the email was sent), the route (from where it was sent and how did it arrive to you) and arrival details (who is the receiver and when it was received). As when you would book a flight ticket with a false identity, the same goes for emails: the sender can partially fake these details, pretending that the email was sent from a different account (common practice for spammers or viruses).

I know that there have been times that I have received emails from an account and when viewing the headers, it actually wasn't the person.
Plus, when I noted it to the sender and they check their sent folder...the sent email that I received wasn't in their sent folder.


biggfredd

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biggfredd

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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2012, 08:22:30 PM »
How big is your haystack?

https://www.grc.com/haystack.htm
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Re: virus/trojan warning
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2012, 01:33:42 PM »
Like Southern Jewel posted, there's spoofed emails, plus such things can happen when your computer is backdoored/trojaned.

  

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