Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Don’t Let Your Computer Talk To Strangers

I did something stupid the other night. Fortunately, my computer has lived to tell the tale.

I clicked on a link in a comment. I know better. Never do this. But I did. I was tired and lacked any sort of judgment beyond the curiosity of an innocent.
All manner of excitement broke loose and a fake site claiming to represent an antivirus program from XP told me I had all manner of viruses, worms, etc.
I was to install something to rid myself of them. A real warning came up, and red circle with an X in it, but something got installed. I tried to stop it, but I am clueless in these matters. When it did get halted a very stern warning came up telling me if I wanted my computer to be clean I’d best keep going.


I ran my assorted proper antivirus and antispyware programs and everything came up clean. When I shut down and restarted this other thing came up and told me all about the 95 viruses and worms and spyware thingies I now had. The new alleged antivirus program told me if I wanted rid of them I had to register and disable my firewall. Fortunately, I am not an idiot.
I uninstalled whatever had installed itself, but it left a foul icon in the tray that kept popping up and trying to scare me with the 95 problems my computer had.
I got it to the repair shop quickly and it was found to have some spyware. It was removed and my real antivirus program has been kicked up a few notches.

I’m happy this was taken care of quickly and efficiently and with limited, if any, damages. I lost some stuff in the recycle bin. Does that even count?
I did, however, experience blog withdrawal. I was cold all day, nervous, and a bit shaky. What to do?

Well, I did some cleaning and made a new hypnosis tape that I’d been meaning to get to for a few days. I napped a bit, too, but mostly I was lost. My connection to the outside world was severed. I’d written about the importance of my blog buddies and there I was, unable to check in with them. At least I had some irony to appreciate.

Everything is okay now and I’m back on track. I’ve learned a lesson I already knew: Don’t let your computer talk to strangers.


the Bag Lady said...

The Bag Lady had a strange comment on her blog this morning, and, after your email yesterday, was clever enough not to click on the link. She did not hesitate to delete that little sucker!
Thanks, dfLeah, for being the brave and stalwart soldier leading the way for the rest of us!!

the Bag Lady said...

Was the comment, perchance, from someone named Akingol, or something similar?

Leah J.Utas said...

dfBag Lady thanks for your kind words about me leading the way.
I can't recall exactly, and I'd be reluctant to write it exactly 'cuz I'm scared, but the name ended with "bar" or similar and began with "issi" or "ini" or some such.
The whole comment was the word "here" as a link.
Meanwhile I found another one this morning from "Adam Brown"
who seemed to think I'd believe he'd been by earlier and I should click the link to make money writing.
Deleted him.

Reb said...

Wow, I am glad you were fast to get to the repair shop Cousin. I still find it hard to believe that there are people out there that produce spam and viruses just for fun. That is just sick in the extreme.

Leah J.Utas said...

I am danged lucky to get it in and taken care of so fast.
The sick creeps who do this for fun ought to have it done back to them 10 fold.
Spam is just sad and annoying, but the creators of computer infections are the lowest forms of life.

Hilary said...

I'm glad it didn't get too serious and that you're back up and running again. I think I'll go hug my Mac now. ;)

Leah J.Utas said...

Thanks, Hilary.