Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hotmail Fail.

Yesterday, my email account was hacked and a message was sent to my entire address book asking for money. I was walking in beautiful, sunny Vevey with my husband, enjoying the gorgeous outdoor photo exhibit  when I received a call on my Swiss cell phone from my dad. I freaked out as he never calls this number and feared something happened in the family. I soon found out that I was the victim. After mentioning the email, he went on to state his opinions on how this was obviously a scam because the embassy would have been helpful, etc, etc. I became annoyed. Ugh.

This is how clever hackers are nowadays:

The email started off with emotions, which I give the hacker credit, I do like to lead stories with a tug at the heartstrings, but then s/he got it all wrong. Sure, if you know me even a little bit and have been in touch in the past year, you would know that the email did not make sense for a few reasons. Here are my two biggest complaints, although I could go on and on about them all.
  1. Horrendous grammar. I mean, I am no English pro, but I hate a poorly worded and spelled email. Lodged? I have never used this word in my life. Correct tense and all, but not a favorite word of mine. I get nauseous every time I read this and see my name signed at the end. 
  2. Hotel bill for $1450?? Can you say student budget and ramen noodles for a year? How the heck does one spend $1450 on hotels for a short vacation? If this situation did happen, for future reference, the skype call would have gone something like this: "Hey, I am totally embarrassed, but since we are staying in the "dodgy"part of town at this extremely cheap hostel, we got mugged. Luckily, we only owe $120 for 3 nights at the hostel for 2 people and the muggers got away with our student IDs and 10 CHF. Haha, that won't even work here. Good thing the UK and Switzerland decided not to go Euro ;) Anyways, I don't actually need the cash since the hostel manager is understanding, but just wanted to call to tell you the ridiculous story. We are fine and heading back on our easyjet flight shortly."
I hate anyone that does anything like this. I felt violated for having someone go through my account, change all my details and block me from what is mine. It was like someone went to rob my house, found it empty, but stayed inside, changed the locks, maybe even waited for someone to stop by with some cash. Get out of my place!!! I definitely learned my lesson and my super-techy man has berated me about the need for strong passwords that are routinely changed. 

Thank you to everyone who after reading the clearly bogus email for the concern and the emails, calls, messages. The only thing that actually had me worried was that our family in Colombia that doesn't know my English written "voice."They were worried and they are kind people, almost kind enough to believe that horribly written email, but luckily one cousin replied "LOL, we are Colombian, we know when something is a scam." 

For all of those out there who are still thinking, geesh, I would have liked to send you money. Nicholas is currently accepting donations :) 

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