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Thread: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

  1. #1
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    How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Hi all,

    A few months ago I made the switch to ubuntu. Last night, my hotmail account sent a spam email to all my contacts list.

    To my knowledge I've not been doing anything I've not done before using Windows/internet.

    I'm using firefox with the no-script plug which I've used for years. I didn't download anything or even open any emails.

    Looking back through yesterdays internet history I didn't visit any websites I've not visited before. And no dodgy websites at all.

    Anyone know what caused the spam sending? And what actions should I take now? My confidence in Ubuntu has taken a slight dent - hopefully you guys can reassure me!

    Serp.

  2. #2
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    It sounds like someone has cracked you hotmail account, probably due to a weak password. It has nothing to do with Ubuntu. Hotmail is a webmail service, that is operating system agnostic. My suggestion would be to close the account and create a new one with a strong password.

    Jim

  3. #3
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Can't you just change your password to something more difficult to hack?

  4. #4
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Switch to Gmail, which is a hundred times better with no ads...?
    You can also set it up where you can send email from your hotmail account, which is really nifty.
    > Intel® Pentium® Dual Core T3200 2.0GHz | Running Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex
    > Currently learning the ins and outs of Ubuntu Server
    > The difference between Windows and a virus? Viruses rarely fail...

  5. #5
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Quote Originally Posted by SerpicoUK View Post
    Last night, my hotmail account sent a spam email to all my contacts list.
    How did you find out exactly ? There was spam in your outbox ?
    Or did one of your contacts complain ?
    If there was no spam in your outbox, did you then check the email-headers to see which ip address was used ?
    Are you using only webmail, or also a mail-client which connect to hotmail.com ?

    You should also realise that email-viruses on infected MS-Windows machines make up pretty random From: and To: addresses (in the emails they send out) bases on addressbooks that the virus comes across.

    Apart from that, IIRC, hotmail.com has had security problems in the past where mailboxes could be read and used by others.

  6. #6
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Microsoft owns Hotmail... go figure.

    Hotmail accounts get hacked all the time...
    ( o< -Computers do not have problems, they have users. ~Cope57
    / /\
    V_/_

  7. #7
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Everyone has been emailing me telling I've sent them an odd email. Some in my sent box as well.

    I find it hard to believe my account has been cracked. If so then whoever did must surely be able to get into 90% of accounts as my account is secured by a long random string of alpha-numeric.

  8. #8
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Quote Originally Posted by SerpicoUK View Post
    Everyone has been emailing me telling I've sent them an odd email. Some in my sent box as well.
    Okay, did you check the email-headers ?
    To find out about the possible ip address source, the possible email-client used, and the time it was send around.
    I find it hard to believe my account has been cracked. If so then whoever did must surely be able to get into 90% of accounts as my account is secured by a long random string of alpha-numeric.
    Do you use https for all your webmail accounts, and pop3-ssl and imap-ssl ? If not, your password could have been sniffed by a 3rd party in between your machine and then destination.

    And this could be interesting to read :
    http://74.125.77.132/search?q=cache:...&hl=en&ct=clnk

  9. #9
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    Just http - the emails originated from my own account. Hotmail doesn't display any information on the email regarding what computer sent it. Does look like something cracked my account.

    I reckon my password it 100x stronger than the common net user. But I've just been googling brute force attacks...looks like you can buy cracking machines for relatively cheap sums (i.e low level criminal spamming outfits) that would make mince meat out of my (and most peoples) password.

    A consequence of computer speed increasing and prices dropping at break neck pace. Can't be too long before a password (that you can remember) just won't protect anything.

    Bit of an eye opener. Thanks for all your replies.
    Last edited by SerpicoUK; April 3rd, 2009 at 09:51 PM.

  10. #10
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    Re: How did this happen? Spam sent from my hotmail account.

    I'm not entirely sure how these things work - but surely microsoft wouldn't allow one ip address to make millions of attempts on a password. Or is there a technical reason as to why they can't stop that?

    Makes me wonder if something more sinister isn't going on - some key-logging or something else...

    Amazing how much paranoia one spamming email can cause.

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