Monday, March 22, 2010

New forms of clever hacking

We all are well informed about hacking and the dangers that it can bring to the victims, right? We know the possible ways we could get hacked, e.g emails, facebook, bank accounts, credit cards, etc., We know as well how to protect ourselves - at least, since I assume that we are all clever enough to take heed. However, having knowledge about how it might be like is nothing compared to actually experiencing to be hacked. Being a victim of this vicious activity is no joke.

We should never underestimate hackers. They are the most educated individuals knowledgeable with technology; they had A+ rating in psychology with expertise in public relation. They know how to trap their victims. They scheme and they plan well. You would never know, you can be the next in their list.

I was contacted by my best friend M**. She sought my advice regarding with the business deal she was negotiating with my other close friend N** [best friend and close friend are also friends]. I asked “what’s the deal?” My best friend is in the Philippines [she just got back after two years of stay in Bangkok] while my other friend is still here in Bangkok. She said that she was asked by N** to provide her with mobile loads/credits. These mobile credits would be for roaming Sim cards that Filipinos based in Thailand are using. M** would provide, N** would sell. The demand is said to be very high. They would be able to sell P50 000 in just a matter of three days. N** would send the money to M** after she collects the payment. Quick money. Therefore best friend asked if she should use her savings that she prepared for the processing of her visa going to Dubai since she was told she would quickly get her money back. Obviously I did not agree that she postpone her processing of her documents so I said “No.” matter of fact. I held that if the business would really work, then she might as well try out first starting with small amount like P5 000. If it does work, then she can increase the capital. I also believed that they should agree to share the capital 50-50 so that it would not be difficult for her. That said, my best friend followed my advice and proposed to Miss N** that they start from a smaller capital. However, immediately the next day, I received a call from my close friend N** informing me that her yahoo messenger and facebook were hacked and that the hacker has been communicating with her friends that were in her contact list. What was even scary was the news that one of her good friends in the Philippines was ripped of P50 000 because she agreed to do business with the hacker. She provided him with mobile loads. My hair stood while I listened to my friend over the phone. I informed her that our friend Miss M** was also contacted by the hacker. As you can guess, I immediately contacted my best friend to inform her that she was communicating with a hacker and not the real friend of ours. But she did not believe. She said she was hundred percent certain that she was communicating with Miss N** because they chatted cam to cam whenever they discussed about the business. She was seeing her over the cam. Great! How was I supposed to explain that fact and convince her not to communicate with the hacker anymore? She sent me the copy of their exchanges in chat. As I read it, I noticed that the hacker used conditioning method. He repeats the phrases, “we’ll earn big”, “and we should not let this pass”, “big profit”. Naturally, as a prospect victim, if you let excitement and desire for big money over power your rational side, then you easily fall in trap.

I was online checking my facebook account. My cousin who is based in the Philippines found me online and buzzed me up. She asked “Hi yen! What’s the status of our business?” I was like “What?!” I couldn’t believe it. “Oh my God! Don’t tell me my own yahoo messenger and facebook were hacked.” I was praying. I replied, “Don’t tell me you’re talking about the mobile load business?” “Yes. Should I send you the credits?” That was exactly something I never expected to hear. I was shocked. How many of my friends were contacted by the hacker from my list? I was getting paranoid. I went on interrogating my cousin on how her communication with the hacker started. She said it started with a simple text message. Somebody sent her a text saying “Hello guys, this is my new roaming number. Xx Yenyen.” The sender used my nickname, a nickname only my family and relatives knew. Other friends do not know me by such name. Then started their business deal. I cracked my head hard trying to connect the puzzles figuring out how the hacker got my identity and where he got my cousin’s mobile number? I first considered the possibility that since my facebook account was once suspended due to some suspicious activities of which I was asked by the facebook team to change my password, it could be that the hacker was able to access my cousin’s contact information by scanning her profile page. But cousin said she does not publish her mobile phone number at facebook or anywhere in the web. Therefore how does the facebook anomaly and her deceiving business partner relate?

I could go on and on, crack my head out, but only more theory branch out from these possibilities that I've got.

10 comments:

  1. Hahaha!I'm still paranoid until now. Read the latest news how the FB account change of password affected you. It was posted in the Inquirer.net yesterday. Didn't know that your cousin was almost swindled as well.
    Helpful post.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is so scary. People must be more aware of who they are talking to online or through testing as there are so many fraudulent people out there. The more the economy falls down, the more hungrier and desperate people will become to get money. The unfortunate issue with anyone that desperate is that they only see money...they have no clue what they are doing to the victims they are stealing from. Money so blinds people. Your cousin was possibly blinded by the fact that she could prosper or maybe even her innocence to disbelieve...the thought of being tricked was not in her mind at all. Gleenn, this is an excellent awareness post and I hope more readers find it.

    Common sense and awareness are a persons only defense against the sneaky and very intelligent hackers.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Here's the link on the Facebook password change scam:
    http://technology.inquirer.net/infotech/infotech/view/20100318-259392/E-mail-scam-targets-Facebook-usersWeb-security-firm

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hmm, a phishing attack that appears to come from a friend is undoubtedly very powerful. I've seen similar cases where you get a message from a "friend" who is travelling, to say they have been robbed and are in urgent need of money...

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  5. wow!!!! I had the same experience with my yahoo messenger which was hacked a couple of months ago and sending trojan viruses to my frends while I was online. It was like an automatic person who is controlling the mouse. Checked my FB and i can no longer log in, then i received the famous password changed from the Facebook Team. Whala!!!

    someone just got in my facebook account and yahoo mails that has a complete access over my entire profile online.

    So I had to changed my ym id and yes, change my pw twice a month for FB and all my email accounts for safe keeping...

    hope all is well my dear..

    i found you at last...you have three blogs!!!

    but will link this...

    i have been seeing you via delance community...take care dear!!!

    Love Sweet
    http://pensandlens.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. @pensandlens,

    I know that this ym and fb hacking is really getting tremendous. When I did change my password after the notification of suspicious activities, I felt safe. But then, if you'll read the comment of Nice above, she is giving us the link about the very action of changing the password. Perhaps, it is not actually the fb team that is sending the notification but instead is the fake fb team trying to get more access to more of our accounts?

    I'm yet to read but I'd like to share the link to you too to check,

    http://technology.inquirer.net/infotech/infotech/view/20100318-259392/E-mail-scam-targets-Facebook-usersWeb-security-firm

    ReplyDelete
  7. thank you for that...I already linked your other blog site, which is the creative fashion...

    It is really nice to meet bloggers in the same foreign land...where are you based in Bangkok/

    anyways...I followed you on twitter already!!!!

    Take Care
    lots of love
    Sweet
    http://pensandlens.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Holy cow, that's really freaking. I've been having a lot of issues with hackers lately. My Facebook account has been hacked twice and most recently someone hacked into one of my old email accounts and sent my current email account a spam email. This makes me nervous!

    ReplyDelete
  9. sorry to hear about your dilema, all hackers should die in hell.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for your time. I'll get back to you soon. :)