Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Skype outage affecting users around the globe (Twitter Too!)

No, it’s not you, and your machine is not malfunctioning.. Skype is.

Skype outage affecting users around the globe

Skype wrote in an e-mail to CNET this morning that it’s “assessing the matter now and its extent. We apologize for the inconvenience caused to our users.”

We will share details as we hear more.”

[update: Twitter went down too! Skype Downtime Complaints Bring The Fail Whale to Twitter [Update: Fixed!]First Skype, Now Twitter Goes Down]

Related: Skype Outage Lesson: Don’t Rely On Consumer Services For Business Functions (EBAY)

December 22, 2010 Posted by | computers, Internet, News, tech, VoIP | , | 2 Comments

Sunday Beauty XII + Fake Skype Warning (yawn)

I wouldn’t mind climbing these stairs…

azores

Photo by JustABoy, courtesy of Flickr. (Click on image to see more by this artist.)


Folks, criminals are once again using Skype to send phishing “chats” in an attempt to infect your machine, and get you to click poisoned links. It is the exact same ruse I first warned you of in early 2008, but (again) the name has changed.
See, Deja Vu All Over Again.. Skype Says It Found A Trojan…

Copyright 2007-2010 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.


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October 3, 2010 Posted by | Digital Images | , , | 6 Comments

Deja Vu All Over Again.. Again

Yes, Folks, criminals are once again using Skype to send phishing “chats” in an attempt to defraud you and trick you into clicking poisoned links. So, I am re-posting this article. It is the exact same ruse I first warned of in early 2008, but (again) the name has changed.

This criminal attack will reappear every so often (roughly every 90 30 days) with a slightly different name and URL… It is a classic scareware attack. They just send these chats to all the Skype users whose name starts with A.. then to the B’s.. etc.

Chat Message Scares Reader Into Installing Malware

Today a Skype chat window opened on my machine, and presented me with a dire warning from someone named “Software Update”, “Registry Scan Online®”, “OnlineUpdate.org”, “OnlineRegistry®” Today’s flavor (I think it was “Update Instructions”..). It said that “WINDOWS REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ATTENTION” and, it provided me with a solution.  skypephish3

(Click on image to see large version)

Please, folks, tell me you have spotted this for what it is. Please tell me that you knew –instantly– that this is a cybercrime attempt; that it is Phraud-ulent.

Please tell me that you know what will happen if the link provided in this message is clicked; and, please, please, please tell me you would never click the link.

Just in case you aren’t sure:
*Software Update”, “Registry Scan Online ®”,  Today’s flavor, doesn’t exist.
*http://www.onlinemonitor.info”, “http://www.registryscan.com”, Today’s flavor, is not registered in ARIN (the registry of Internet addresses).
* clicking the link will allow scripts to run, and/or take you to a poisoned Website which will install malware on your machine, or/and it may take you to a site that will sell you a rogue anti-spyware program
(please read my article, Is that antispyware program really spyware).

* Microsoft DOES NOT alert you via Instant Messaging. No legitimate company does. Period. Ever!
This is a classic example of a hacker’s attempt to get you to click their link.

All of this so they can rip you off. It’s these cyber-criminal’s full time job.

Please point your less-savvy friends and family to this article and educate them to the dangers of spam (unsolicited) messages and tell them– NEVER CLICK THE LINK. (Yes, I am shouting. 2010 is days away here, and I still have to say this everyday.. Sigh.)

[Note: while this article directly references the (VoIP client) Skype, you may see this type of thing in other Instant Messaging/Chat programs, and social networking communications.]

[addenda: Peter Parkes (Skype Blogger) wrote and asked me to remind my readers to, quote, “Please report users who send these messages to abuse@skype.net – that will help us to block them where appropriate.”]

Today’s recommended reading: A FREE Way to Monitor Your Kids Online Activity
If you are a parent who has children who use the computer to access the internet it is very important that you educate yourself and your child about the dangers of the internet. It is important to have strict guidelines in place on their computer usage and a method to supervise and monitor their online activities.

Today’s free downloads(s): I have assembled on my Website a collection of links to the best free anti-malware programs to help you prevent infection.. and clean up if you’ve been infected. To see them, click here.

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.


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April 27, 2010 Posted by | advice, antivirus, computers, cyber crime, hackers, Internet, Internet scam, security, tech, VoIP | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Skype Chat Spam Pushes Penny Stocks

Today I saw a Skype chat window pop open that was new to me. I was surprised because, when I saw it, I thought for sure it was another bogus “WINDOWS REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ATTENTION” scareware phishing ‘attack’ (see, Deja Vu All Over Again.. Skype Says It Found A Trojan…) as these have become rather common. But this one was different.new_Skype_scam

It was the same as the others in that it contained a hyperlink, and came from a stranger, but it was just a spam. A spam pushing a penny stock.

(I have no idea if the hyperlink would have infected my machine..  but.. )

I get to see these because my Skype profile is “public”, and I am listed in Skype’s directory (for business reasons). Cybercriminals simply ‘mass mail’ these tidbits, in the “cast a big net” theory. Someone, somewhere, just might be *unwise* enough to click.

You can change your settings to “private” (if they are not already) and then only those folks who know your “user name” can contact you. If you prefer to remain “public”, click the “Block” button, and then click “Report abuse from this sender” and let the folks at Skype know someone’s misusing the system.

… Sometimes.. I just have to laugh. (It’s better than crying.) Who would be *unwise* enough to respond to this? A few folks must be.. or the criminals wouldn’t bother.

* Folks, see my current software license giveaway: Software Licence Giveaway

Copyright 2007-2010 © Tech Paul. All Rights Reserved. jaanix post to jaanix.


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March 13, 2010 Posted by | advice, computers, cyber crime, hackers, Internet, Internet scam, Phishing, phraud, tech | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Windows Does Not “Requires Immediate Attention”…*

Chat Message Scares Reader Into Installing Malware

Folks, criminals are once again using Skype to send phishing “chats” in an attempt to defraud you. So, I am re-posting this article. It is the exact same ruse I first warned of in early ’08, but the name has changed.
This attack will reappear every so often with a slightly different name and URL… It is a classic scareware attack.

Yesterday a Skype chat window opened on my machine, and presented me with a dire warning from someone named “Software Update” “Registry Scan Online®” Today’s flavor (I think it was “OnlineUpdate.org”..). It said that “WINDOWS REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ATTENTION” and, it provided me with a solution.  SkypeCon

(Click on image to see large version)

Please, folks, tell me you have spotted this for what it is. Please tell me that you knew –instantly– that this is a cybercrime attempt; that it is Phraud-ulent.

Please tell me that you know what will happen if the link provided in this message is clicked; and, please, please, please tell me you would never click the link.

Just in case you aren’t sure:
* “Software Update”, “Registry Scan Online ®”,  Today’s flavor, doesn’t exist.
* “www.onlinemonitor.info”, “www.registryscan.com”, Today’s flavor, is not registered in ARIN (the registry of Internet addresses).
* clicking the link will allow scripts to run, and/or take you to a poisoned Website which will install malware on your machine, or/and it may take you to a site that will sell you a rogue anti-spyware program
(please read my article, Is that antispyware program really spyware).

* Microsoft DOES NOT alert you via Instant Messaging. No legitimate company does. Period. Ever.
This is a classic example of a hacker’s attempt to get you to click their link.

All of this so they can rip you off. It’s these cyber-criminal’s full time job.

Please point your less-savvy friends and family to this article and educate them to the dangers of spam (unsolicited) messages and tell them– NEVER CLICK THE LINK. (Yes, I am shouting. 2010 is days away, and I still have to say this everyday.. Sigh.)
[Note: while this article directly references the VoIP client Skype, you may see this type of thing in other Instant Messaging/Chat programs, and social networking communications.]

[addenda: Peter Parkes (Skype Blogger) wrote and asked me to remind my readers to, quote, “Please report users who send these messages to abuse@skype.net – that will help us to block them where appropriate.”]

Today’s free downloads(s): I have assembled on my Website a collection of links to the best free anti-malware programs to help you prevent infection.. and clean up if you’ve been infected. To see them, click here.

December 28, 2009 Posted by | computers | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Skype Phishing Returns*

Chat Message Scares Reader Into Installing Malware

Folks, after a brief quiet period, criminals are once again using Skype to send phishing “chats” in an attempt to defraud you. So, I am re-posting this article. It is the exact same ruse I first warned of last year, but the name has changed.
This attack will reappear every so often with a slightly different name and URL…

Yesterday a Skype chat window opened on my machine, and presented me with a dire warning from someone named “Software Update” “Registry Scan Online®” Today’s flavor. It said that “WINDOWS REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ATTENTION” and, it provided me with a solution.  SkypeCon

(Click on image to see large version)

Please, folks, tell me you have spotted this for what it is. Please tell me that you knew –instantly– that this is a cybercrime attempt; that it is Phraud-ulent.

Please tell me that you know what will happen if the link provided in this message is clicked; and, please, please, please tell me you would never click the link.

Just in case you aren’t sure:
*Software Update” “Registry Scan Online ®”  Today’s flavor doesn’t exist.
*http://www.onlinemonitor.info” “http://www.registryscan.com” Today’s flavor is not registered in ARIN (the registry of Internet addresses).
* clicking the link will allow scripts to run, and/or take you to a poisoned Website which will install malware on your machine, or/and it may take you to a site that will sell you a rogue anti-spyware program
(please read my article, Is that antispyware program really spyware).

* Microsoft DOES NOT alert you via Instant Messaging. No legitimate company does. Period. Ever.
This is a classic example of a hacker’s attempt to get you to click their link.

All of this so they can rip you off. It’s their full time job.

Please point your less-savvy friends and family to this article and educate them to the dangers of spam (unsolicited) messages and tell them– NEVER CLICK THE LINK.
[Note: while this article directly references the VoIP client Skype, you may see this type of thing in other Instant Messaging/Chat programs, and social networking communications.]

[addenda: Peter Parkes (Skype Blogger) wrote and asked me to remind my readers to, quote, “Please report users who send these messages to abuse@skype.net – that will help us to block them where appropriate.”]

Today’s free link: Pirated Windows 7 leads to malware, botnet

Today’s free downloads(s): I have assembled on my Website a collection of links to the best free anti-malware programs to help you prevent infection.. and clean up if you’ve been infected. To see them, click here.

Related: Bill Mullins has posted a very complete tutorial, Think You Have A Virus?– Some Solutions, which is quite probably the best one-stop lesson on malware I have ever run across. (I also recommend his How Fake/Rogue Software Affects Real People.)

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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May 13, 2009 Posted by | advice, computers, cyber crime | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

“WINDOWS REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ATTENTION”

Folks, after a quiet period, cyber-crooks are once again using Skype to send phishing “chats” in an attempt to defraud you, and infect your machine with their crimeware. So, I am reposting this article. It is the exact same ruse, but the name has changed.

Yesterday a “chat” window (Skype) opened on my machine, and presented me with a dire warning from someone named “Software Update” “Registry Scan Online®”. It said that “WINDOWS REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ATTENTION” and, it provided me with a solution. SkypeCon (Click on image to see large version)

Please, folks, tell me you have spotted this for what it is. Please tell me that you knew –instantly– that this is a cyber-crime attempt; that it is Phraud-ulent. Please tell me that you know what will happen if the link provided in this message is clicked; and, please, please, please tell me you would never click the link.

Just in case you aren’t sure: * “Software Update” “Registry Scan Online ®” doesn’t exist. *http://www.onlinemonitor.info” “www.registryscan.com” is not registered in ARIN (the registry of Internet addresses).
* clicking the link will allow scripts to run, and/or take you to a poisoned Website which will install malware on your machine, or/and it may take you to a site that will sell you a rogue anti-spyware program (please read my article, Is that antispyware program really spyware).
* Microsoft DOES NOT alert you via Instant Messaging. No legitimate company does. Period. Ever.

This is a classic example of a hacker’s attempt to get you to click their link. All of this so they can rip you off. It’s their full time job. Please point your less-savvy friends and family to this article and educate them to the dangers of spam (unsolicited) messages and tell them– NEVER CLICK THE LINK.

[Note: while this article directly references the VoIP client Skype, you may see this type of thing in other Instant Messaging/Chat programs.]

[addenda: Peter Parkes (Skype Blogger) wrote and asked me to remind my readers to, quote, “Please report users who send these messages to abuse@skype.net – that will help us to block them where appropriate.”]

Today’s free link(s): I have assembled on my Website a collection of links to some of the best free anti-malware programs to help you prevent infection.. and clean up if you’ve been infected. To see them, click here.
Also, Bill Mullins has posted a very complete tutorial, Think You Have A Virus?– Some Solutions, which is quite probably the best one-stop lesson on malware I have ever run across. (I also recommend his How Fake/Rogue Software Affects Real People.)

Copyright 2007-8 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

March 4, 2009 Posted by | advice, computers, cyber crime | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment