Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Worse Than Spam

The Windows Live team isn't fooling anyone by trying to pass promo spam off as a tech support email.Tweet Bite

The only thing worse than SPAM is when the company spamming you, acknowledges within the spam itself, that they aren't supposed to spam you and trys to pass the spam off the as something else.

Today, I received this email from the Windows Live Team.

Worse than Spam

They acknowledge within the email, "your settings do not allow Microsoft to send you promotional information", yet they are emailing me anyway?

Maybe they think that they are fooling someone by disguising it as "contacting you regarding your communication preference settings". As if this makes it non promotional.

But at the end of the day, they sent me this email to promote the changing of my settings so that they could send me promotions. Lame attempt.

I don't actually use this account for anything real. I use Gmail. But I guess it fits, since I only use this account to fill out forms that I think I might get spammed from. And I did.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

I've been #twitterjacked

Over the weekend, I discovered that I had been #twitterjacked. An account by the name @lncjmsjones76 had been stealing my tweets (@ljjones) and republishing them as if they were his own without giving any credit to me. It was easy enough to do, as I am sure the person just grabbed my Twitter RSS feed and used a robot to republish it to his account.

Like anything rising in popularity, Twitter has experienced its own forms of spam and nefarious behavior. We have seen many accounts set up to impersonate famous people. While some were created out of respect for the famous person, many have been set up with the intent to deceive.

The great thing about Twitter is that everyone is willing to look out for the people in their network. I was alerted to the fraudulent account by a friend of mine named Anthony Power (@apowerpoint). I had sent him an @reply a few days ago, and over the weekend, he received the same exact @reply from @lncjmsjones76. Realizing someone was stealing my tweets, he sent me an email with a link to the account.

What I can’t figure out is why steal my Tweets. I would like to think that it is because my Tweets were so full of wisdom that they are worth stealing, but I am sure that’s not the case. I was probably randomly picked by someone too lazy to tweet themselves who was trying to build a profile. The weird thing is that I couldn’t see any objective in creating the profile. The profile looked liked it used a fake name that it had created from my initials and there wasn’t even a link to a website.

After doing some investigating, I contacted Twitter and they suspended the account for me, but not before I had a little fun with it. Knowing that it was all automated, I figured I would post a few tweets proving that the account was a fraud. So I tweeted and an hour later, this tweet showed up in the other account.

If you think you have been #twitterjacked, grab one of your tweets that’s a few days old and plug it into the Twitter search. Do it both, with and without quotes around it. If you do find that someone is doing something suspicious, report it to Twitter through their @spam account.