Thursday, December 30, 2010

new phishing scam: Employed or Unemployed? and other computer things to watch out for

dec 30th, 2010

this is the latest equivalent of the nigerian 414 scams. i have got these several times: including from an alleged group of indians in the UAE.

the scammers have certainly improved their english. it now sounds almost indistinguishable from the real thing. the great fervor to serve humanity is the classic giveaway though. (somehow this reminds me of other 'service minded' people like susan arundhati roy and binayak sen, and their pals the godmen).

also, i got hit by a strange download, i guess, called 'easy scan'. i had left my computer unattended for a few hours, and on returning to the computer noticed a large download of about 700MB. then my computer started terrorizing me with messages from 'easy scan' that said my hard disk root sector was damaged, and it kindly offered, for payment of $100, to fix it for me. i was unable to do a lot of normal things like bringing up my 'all programs' list because this scary message about system crash at xxxxFDEC something would come up and it would reboot the system. i could not remove it using the system tool add/delete programs; had to use msconfig and change the startup files. i figured its offer to 'uninstall' would probably do further damage.

i finally ended up having to restore my system to an earlier checkpoint. god knows what info it has swiped from my disk.

so, a word to the wise: even if you have a good virus checker on board (i do), do not leave your system unattended and connected to the internet for any length of time. the antivirus software did not even catch this even though it was running in real-time mode. 

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Tony <>
Date: Tue, Dec 28, 2010 at 5:45 PM
Subject: Employed or Unemployed?


I was researching the Internet and came across your e-mail and decided to contact you and the reason is our future. I was wondering if this economic downfall effected you at all? We are the team of individuals that care and are willing to help you create a better future. If you are confused and are looking for the answers reply back to this e-mail and we'll send you information that we know did help thousands of individuals like yourself create better future.

Happy Holidays



witan said...

@Nizhal Yoddha,
I am a bit intrigued by your putting the "Nigerian 414" scams and "Easy Scan" (aka EasyScan) in the same class. The Nigerian scams require you to reply to the emails and continue to respond, for achieving their objective of making you part with your money in favour of the sender of the email. EasyScan is malware.

nizhal yoddha said...

i didnt put them in the same class, only in the same post. i said the email offering help was in the same category as 414, and that there are other computer problems eg easyscan that one needs to be aware of.