Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Spam, and more Spam: from blogs to Nigerian scams

I've had some problems lately with spam comments in this blog. I must have deleted up to 10-15 comments at least in the past 2 weeks. Every now and then I get an e-mail in my inbox, and there it is: the spam message in chinese, with every kind of spamming links, from pr0n (as it is the word in the intertubez) to selling I don't know what.

If there is one thing I dislike, in general, from my mailbox to the forums I frequent to the blogs is spam. I understand that people want to advertise their product, and that they want to sell; but spamming sites and blogs is not the answer. Nowadays, there are ways of getting rid of spam, that is very effective.

For example, mail programs have spam rules, and put various spam messages into the Junk or Spam inbox. They don't always get it right, but they do at least 9 times out of 10. I do check my junk mail to see if there has been an error at times. For example, this morning one of the messages from ESA got into the junk mail, and I just redirected it to the normal inbox.

There is also the kind of spammer who is looking for victims; like the Nigerian scams, or the bank e-mails. If you point (without clicking) on to one of the links in the scam bank e-mails, you will see that those links re-direct to a different web address than the one you see on your screen. This is done in order to make you think that you are linking towards the bank's website, while, in reality, you get re-directed to a site where your username and password as well as other details can be keylogged and used by fraudsters.

As for the Nigerian scams, I had found once a little book with some of the most famous Nigerian scams around. I have regretted not buying it at the time; it must have been more than 6-7 years ago though. Nigerian scams have been here almost since the time of faxes; I have gotten a number of those letters by fax in the company. Maybe they have been around even longer, and the first ones were by snail mail? I don't know, but it might not be so far-fetched.

After all there are a lot of gullible people in the world, ready to believe anyone and anything.