Phishy Facebook Emails

Facebook phishes are getting better. Compare this one: and this: Notice how the key bit, supposedly defining that it’s a legit email, is successfully and convincingly faked: The only difference that stands out is the domain: facebookembody.com. Although Google classified it as spam they didn’t warn that it would go to a website that contains …

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Getting Paid for Doing Bad Things (12″ version)

This is the extended version of my earlier blog post. The BBC finally ran my commentary so for those of you who want more info, here it is: Think of it as product placement for the Internet. It’s been around a while, but I just figured out how it works, and it made me realise …

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Getting Paid for Doing Bad Things

I have recently received half a dozen offers of placing links in my blogs to reputable companies’ websites. Think of it as product placement for the Internet. It’s been around a while, but I just figured out how it’s done, and it made me realise that the early dreams of a blogging utopia on the …

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How to Abuse Social Media and Lose Friends

I’m sure they’re not the first to do this, but I really hate it: referral marketing. SingTel, Singapore’s main phone operator, is encouraging Singaporeans to spam their friends via email, twitter, Facebook and SMS. The sad thing is they’ll have to do this a lot to get anywhere. You get 1 point for every tweet …

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Facebook Scams: Not Out of the Woods

Facebook may have just won a theoretical warchest from a spammer, but it’s not put its house in order when it comes to scams. Indeed, I suspect they’re getting worse. Now you can get infected without even having to visit your Facebook account. What happens is that, if you have set your profile to receive …

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Think Hard Before You Get Linked In

I’ve been trying to remove a contact on LinkedIn who proudly claims to be one of the best linked people on the planet. Why that’s a good thing I’m not sure, but I noticed I was getting LinkedIn spam—spam to my own email address, but coming via LinkedIn–from this person, so I tried to remove …

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Updater Fever

I sometimes wonder what software companies—Apple, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, they’re all the same—want from their customers. I spend enough time with novice users to know how confusing using computer software can be. Especially online: It’s a scary world out there (they’re right to be scared) but these companies, which should know better, make it more …

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Google Suggest: Your Company + Scam

I find that the auto suggestions feature from Google Suggest in the Firefox search box very useful. But perhaps not in the way it was intended. Google Suggest works via algorithms that “use a wide range of information to predict the queries users are most likely to want to see. For example, Google Suggest uses …

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The Splog Thickens

I was amused, and somewhat perplexed, to read on BuzzMachine yesterday about a bizarre splog—spam blog to the rest of us—which copies text and then converts it to synonyms. Jeff explains:  New splog tricks In my ego searches, I just saw a splog that copied text of mine but ran it through ridiculous almost-synonym replacements. …

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Why Social Network Sites May Fail

Look at a social networking site lie Yaari and you can see where the social networking phenomenon may fail, simply by abusing the trust of its users. Sites like LinkedIn, Plaxo etc rely on expanding quickly by offering a useful service: trawling your address book to find friends and contacts who use the same service. …

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