The following information was taken in large part from an article on
C-Net News.  We have edited it extensively to take out technical jargon since the majority of our audience does not care about the technical stuff.

 

Hackers are trying to trick people to a nasty Web site using cell phone text messages.

 

A text message is sent to the unsuspecting victim’s cell phone, thanking them for subscribing to a make-believe dating service. The message states that they will be automatically charged a fee of $2.00 per day via their phone bill, unless their subscription is cancelled online. (Notice, it does not give an opportunity to cancel via text message reply. – TCG)

 

Of course the user is going to go there right away and attempt to unsubscribe, especially if they are married!  But, the first thing you need to do is delete the text message and forget it!  Secondly, tell your spouse about it.  It is better to head this off at the pass than to have something creep up later and try explaining to your spouse about the dating service you’ve subscribed to wasn’t really a dating service and you didn’t really subscribe to it.  Yeah, right!  (I know we are not marriage counselors and the advice here is strictly from 30 years of marriage, not formal training as a marriage counselor!)

 

The attack began in July 2006 in the U.S.  Once victims visit the fake dating site to unsubscribe, they are prompted to download a program that will cause problems on the victim’s PC.  The attackers provide instructions on how to bypass security warnings in Internet Explorer!  (Please don’t do this! – TCG)

 

After the program is installed, it turns the computer into a "zombie," allowing it to be remotely controlled by the hackers. The compromised machines then become part of a "bot" network, which can then be used to cause problems all over the Internet and your machine is one of the guilty machine!

 

Please be careful on the net.  There are thousands of bad guys out there just looking for victims.

 

For more on this or other Internet Security matters, please write to Dennis@TheComputerGuysLLC.com.

 

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