Welcome to my e-mail…now leave

Being born in 1981, I remember a time before cell phones, e-mail, the Internet, and iPads; to anyone born in the last 10 to 15 years, I probably sound ancient.

So have all of these technological advances really helped us?  I suppose so.  Certain aspects of life are simpler now because of the technology that is so readily available to us.  Oftentimes you can get in touch with someone much faster via text, e-mail, or Facebook, than you could if you called them or went over to their house.

Am I against technology?  Not at all.  Do I use it?  All the time…like now for instance.  But maybe we should bring back, oh, I don’t know, messenger pigeons or the Pony Express, as a backup to e-mail, just in case it’s ever hacked into–like mine was last Thursday. Image

I woke up that morning, and having quicker access at the moment to my phone than to my computer, checked my e-mail on my phone.  Let’s see…an e-mail from the wine list I subscribed to, and oh look, Amazon’s having a sale on that book I wanted, but hold on a minute…what are these fifteen undeliverable message notices?  All from the time range of 7:49 a.m. to 7:51 a.m.  And two others regarding a craigslist posting that is no longer active.

Okay…

I know I didn’t send any e-mails yet, and the two that I sent the day before went through.  And I certainly did not respond to a post on craigslist.  My first thought was that someone hacked into my e-mail, and I figure that I will deal with it once I get online on my computer.

Before I can do that, my aunt calls me, wondering about this e-mail she received from “me” about a weight loss program.  Alright, yes.  Someone has definitely hacked into my e-mail account, spammed everyone on my contacts list, and now everyone I know is going to think, that I think, that they need to lose weight.

I get online, where one of my cousins has e-mailed me about the very same thing, only she  wasn’t able to access the link.  Apparently, the body of the e-mail was only a link that you click on and that takes you to the weight loss ad.

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Grumbling under my breath, I set to the time-consuming task of contacting each of my contacts, which includes family, friends, co-workers, former co-workers, employers, etc, doing my best to forewarn them.  I explained that my e-mail had been hacked, and if they received an e-mail from “me” about a weight loss program, just ignore it and delete it.  I was afraid that it could contain a virus or malware that may be unleashed onto their computers if they opened it.

That done, I next wanted to contact Yahoo regarding the hacking situation.  I didn’t know that to actually talk to a living person there, you have to practically travel to their corporate headquarters; I really thought that I may have to do that.

Eventually, I found an e-mail address and a phone number for them, but only because I Googled it.  Nowhere on Yahoo’s site did I see anything about contacting them.  Even the “Contact Us” link on their website doesn’t take you to a person, it directs you to their help pages instead.

That’s fine if I have a minor troubleshooting problem, like changing my password, (which I obviously had to do anyway), or something like that, but someone in Turkey, (yes, Turkey), got into my e-mail, I need to talk to someone!  I sent them an e-mail, and saved the number in my phone, in case they didn’t respond, and/or the problem persisted.

The next day, everything seemed to be back to normal, and no such problems since then, (knock on wood).

I still don’t know what the point was, for the hacker, I mean.  Fortunately, there did not seem to be any viruses or malware for the people who did open the e-mail before I contacted them.  So if it was only to send spam, and then using my account to do this so that it wouldn’t be tracked back to them, well, it worked.  But what was the point?

Hopefully they didn’t gain anything from their escapade.

I’m over it now, (as you can tell).

So maybe I’ll just relax now, with a glass of wine and a book from Amazon. Image

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