Deviant Login Shop  Join deviantART for FREE Take the Tour
×

:iconmisslunarose: More from MissLunaRose


More from deviantART



Details

Submitted on
April 7, 2013
Link
Thumb

Stats

Views
11,687 (26 today)
Favourites
478 (who?)
Comments
433
×

How to Avoid the REAL Hackers

Journal Entry: Sun Apr 7, 2013, 9:24 AM
Brought to you by Super Editor


Please consider :+fav:ing and commenting on this article so it can reach more people.

Here's a message about a "hacker" that has been appearing in my inbox lately. I've added paragraph breaks so that it's easier to read, but I have edited nothing else.

SIGNAL BOOST: HEY, PLEASE READ THIS- ITS SERIOUSLY IMPORTANT THE FATE OF YOUR INTERNET-LIFE IS AT STAKE!!!!!! APPARENTLY THERE IS A HACKER ON DEVIANTART, CALLED 'LIFE OWNER'..... TELL EVERYONE ON YOUR LIST BECAUSE IF SOMEBODY ON YOUR LIST ADDS HIM THEN YOU WILL GET HIM ON YOUR LIST. HE WILL FIGURE OUT YOUR ID COMPUTER ADDRESS, SO COPY AND PASTE THIS MESSAGE TO EVERYONE EVEN IF YOU DON'T CARE FOR THEM AND FAST BECAUSE IF HE HACKS THEIR EMAIL HE HACKS YOUR MAIL TOO (I think what it means by that is that he could assume the identity of your friends, and FOOL you into opening the letter since you think it's your friend that's sending it )!!...

Anyone using Internet mail such as Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL and so on. This information arrived this morning, Direct from both Microsoft and Norton. Please send it to everybody you know who has access to the Internet.

You may receive an apparently harmless e-mail titled 'Mail Server Report' If you open either file, a message will appear on your screen saying: 'It is too late now, your life is no longer beautiful.' Subsequently you will LOSE EVERYTHING IN YOUR PC, And the person who sent it to you will gain access to your name, e-mail and password. This is a new virus which started to circulate on Saturday afternoon.

AOL has already confirmed the severity, and the anti virus software's are not capable of destroying it . The virus has been created by a hacker who calls himself 'life owner'.. PLEASE SEND A COPY OF THIS TO ALL Remember, always be careful of messages you receive in email-don't open them unless you're 100% POSITIVE they're safe. If you have even the SLIGHTEST doubt, DON'T open it-DELETE it, it's the smart thing to do!


Looks scary? Yes. Looks believable? No. Here are the warning signs:

~It's full of grammar mistakes, all caps, and unnecessary exclamation points (common in chain mail that uses scare tactics, such as the "I'm the ghost of an insane child who will murder you if you don't send this to 15 people" variant).

~It refers to a real "Mail Server Report" email virus that circulated ages ago. That virus used technology that security programs can now detect and destroy without very much trouble.

~I once received a warning like this in my email inbox with about the same phrasing... about six years ago. Somehow I doubt this "life owner" is still doing the same thing. And hardly anyone uses AOL anymore! According to a study last month, it isn't in the top 10 email providers, leaving it with 1% of the market or less. Clearly this message is not recent.

~It talks about an email that you will receive, although apparently this person is hacking on deviantART. Hmm. Clearly the writer didn't take the time to reread the message. Or, you know, (s)he just changed one word to make it seem closer to us.

~"IF SOMEBODY ON YOUR LIST ADDS HIM THEN YOU WILL GET HIM ON YOUR LIST"
How exactly can somebody gain access to your account by simply appearing on your friend's friends/contact list? Unless "life owner" hacks your friend's account and your friend has your password in an email, (s)he can't gain automatic access to your account.

~Apparently Microsoft, Norton, and AOL have all acknowledged this. Where are the links to confirmation? I'm not believing this without proof from a reputable source, and a search yielded no credible proof.



It's easy to fall prey to scare tactics such as these. However, before you send these messages to your friends, remember to reread them and look for red flags. Does the description sound improbable or inconsistent? Does it claim to have support from well-known sources without actually proving it? Are credible sources posting warnings too? Is the message full of all caps, spelling errors, and misplaced commas?

Remember, just as there are trolls who enjoy angering others, there are people who enjoy scaring others. But as long as you pay close attention to what you read and use logic, you can weed out the fake warnings and not let those people win.

If you're still concerned about your friends, don't simply copy and paste a frightening message. Instead, try sending them some info about hackers and web safety. (You can send them this journal if you'd like.) Besides, variants of this warning have been circulating since 2002, so it's quite likely that they've seen something like this before.


How to Be Less Vulnerable to Hackers and Viruses



Email and Messaging
~Never give anyone your passwords. This includes your friends. If they accidentally download a virus or are hacked, any information on their computer or hacked account could be compromised. Do you really want to risk that?

~Whenever you log in, check to make sure that you're logging into the right website. If your bank sends an email with a link to log in, never click the link. On a different tab, go to the real website and log in there, no matter what the email says. People can create fake log in pages to get your password.

~Delete chain emails from your friends or weird emails from strangers. While it's unlikely that hackers are behind them, it's safer to avoid them, and sometimes people who start these are trying to collect a bunch of email addresses to sell to spammers. You don't want to pass on things like that.


Software, Network, and Extensions
~Protect your computer by getting good antivirus software, and have it scan regularly. Here are PC World's latest antivirus software rankings. Antivirus programs cannot detect everything, but they certainly help.

~Secure your wireless network. Many people use insecure networks, allowing others to jump onto the network and see what you're doing. Here's a step-by-step tutorial from WikiHow and another resource from OnGuardOnline.gov.

~Download Adblock Plus, an extension that blocks all irritating and intrusive ads. (Google it and a link to download the version for your browser will appear right away.) It blocks potentially malicious advertisements and... pretty much all ads, too, which is really nice.

~NotScripts for Google Chrome and NoScript for Firefox allow scripts to run on only the sites on which you enable them, which helps keep sites from downloading viruses onto your computer. I recommend that you download Chrome or Firefox (they're free) if you use Internet Explorer, as Internet Explorer isn't as secure.

~Java often has security holes, so uninstall it if you don't really need it.

Browsing
~Avoid visiting unfamiliar sites or clicking on ads or links from unknown sources. They may have viruses. Google Chrome and some other browsers may block or warn you about potentially dangerous content, but again, they aren't perfect and it's better to play it safe.

~If a popup from an unknown source claims that your computer has a virus, don't believe it, especially if it warns of dire consequences unless you download its "virus protection program."

~Never download an executable file (.exe) unless you completely trust the source.

~To be extra cautious (especially for financial things), try logging in with an onscreen keyboard to prevent potential keyloggers from finding your passwords.
For Windows, it can be accessed through the following path:
Start Menu > All Programs > Accessories > Ease of Access > On-Screen Keyboard
(Thanks to Yamaha160 for suggesting this!)

~If you can afford it, set aside one computer to use for financial transactions and nothing else. How can it get a virus if you only use it for three very secure websites?

Thanks to my technologically savvy brother fenhydra for suggesting a few of these tips.



Hover Over for Life News
The Magic of Love | Writer's Guides | Sorry for inactivity | TheUselessGroup is looking for new admins

Add a Comment:
 
:iconpurplekatz93:
purplekatz93 Jan 16, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I shall share this with all my friends.
Reply
:iconhybridicreincarnate:
HybridicReincarnate Jan 15, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Ah, thank you
Reply
:icondesirae12:
desirae12 Jan 13, 2014  Student Digital Artist
ok thanks for share it to me
Reply
:iconeddywardster:
eddywardster Jan 13, 2014  Student General Artist
Reading this gives me a some ease. I'm going to share this to a friend if you don't mind. I'm sure she'll find brief relief after reading this.
Reply
:iconsnowflower2097:
snowflower2097 Jan 11, 2014  Student Digital Artist
It's a hoax stop posting it.
Reply
:iconmisslunarose:
MissLunaRose Jan 12, 2014   General Artist
Hi,

I am aware that it's a hoax. If you read the full journal, you'll understand why I included it. :aww:
Reply
Hidden by Owner
:iconmisslunarose:
MissLunaRose Nov 8, 2013   General Artist
It doesn't look like anything to be overly concerned about. :aww:

At worst, this is probably a copied and pasted response because the deviant is hoping to get attention (hence the question about checking out his work). I would say that this is probably not a malicious spammer. Here's why:

:bulletblue: He has two deviations, both of which are similar enough in style to be drawn by the same person. Usually spambots don't post deviations.
:bulletblue: He describes himself on his deviantID.
:bulletblue: He cares enough about the site to get a premium membership. (My guess is that he's had another account before this one, and that's why he got a premium on his first day. That would also explain why he's joined several prominent groups, when most new users are unfamiliar with groups.)

I highly doubt that you could get hacked simply by visiting someone's page. I've never heard of it happening, and I would fall over in shock if I did, because how could deviantART have such a huge security hole? There is no way that dA would allow premium members to hack other members. I'd ask my brother about it, but I already have a feeling of what he'd say: it's impossible.

Usually, you should be cautious when it comes to encountering unfamiliar websites (not unfamiliar users on a familiar website). There, it might try installing something on your computer; however, if you don't permit cookies, use an ad blocker, and only agree to download things from sites you really trust, you should be fine.

I gave the user a llama. I imagine that if he's a real person, he'll give me a llama in return or be obnoxious and thank me/do nothing without returning it. He looks, if anything, like a guy who wants to promote himself, and I see no reason why you should be afraid to politely thank him for the compliment, ignore his work, and proceed with your day.

P. S. I've hidden your comment to protect the guy's identity. Feel free to respond, though; I didn't hide it out of irritation.
Reply
:iconrainbowdash-90:
RainbowDash-90 Dec 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
whoa is that really... true???
Reply
:iconmisslunarose:
MissLunaRose Dec 17, 2013   General Artist
To my knowledge!
Reply
Add a Comment: