View Full Version : Virus attack

22-08-2011, 10:06 PM
A friend, who uses a hotmail account, appears to have had her addressbook infiltrated. Emails in her name, that are in a foreign language and refer the reader to long links, are being received by her friends. She has changed her password to hotmail in the hope that these emails will cease. Is there any value in referring an email, with its links, to a laboratory to determine if a virus is present?

22-08-2011, 10:27 PM
Just my opinion ... but hotmail / gmail accounts tend to be targeted for hacking all the time, probably because there's so many of them and the security isn't all that good.

Tell your friend to change her password to the strongest level possible, check it every day and DO NOT open emails with attachments that are sent to her from people she doesn't know ... in fact ... delete any emails that she doesn't know who they're from.

Make sure she has good Anti-virus protection (NOD32 for paid - MSE Free) plus Malwarebytes and Spybot for ... well Malware and Spyware ... and run weekly scans.

If she's got Nortons ... ditch it quick !!

As to Laboratory testing ... might need to have a bit of cash around. You can generally get some VERY reliable help on this forum to work through problems and LEARN something at the same time.

Ask Questions ... get feedback .. follow instructions ... good luck.

Just read the "email with links" bit ... not a good idea as you can be redirected to malicious sites. Again, if you don't know who sent you the email delete it ... without opening any links or attachments.

22-08-2011, 10:27 PM
(Why the Bold ??)

If its web based, which hotmail is, then often there's not really a lot that can be done. Someone may have hacked the account, and even changing passwords wont be of any use as they may be getting sent the new one.

Sometimes its just as easy to make up a new account, add in the people in the new address book, then contact those people advising the original account has been infiltrated, and its not them that's sending out mails.

Advise of the new address / email, block the old one.

22-08-2011, 10:47 PM
It sounds as though the password was already reset (http://windowslivehelp.com/solution.aspx?solutionid=6ea0c7b3-1473-4176-b03f-145b951dcb41).

Check the password reset information (http://windowslivehelp.com/solution.aspx?solutionid=a9237dcb-8449-4d51-84ff-8f7304ada5b2) and configure those options to have only the correct information.

Under Hotmail Options (click the name in the upper right to find these), make sure that Email Forwarding and Rules for Sorting New Messages are both blank.

And make sure the PC itself is secure (fully updated, clean on anti-virus scans), otherwise there could be a keylogger or other malware sending each new password to the hijackers.


23-08-2011, 11:44 AM
Looks as if your email address has been harvested from the net.There is NO solution to this. Once a spammer has your email address there’s nothing you can do to stop messages being sent either to or from your address.

Spammers harvest email addresses from distribution lists in email headers on chain emails. Spam is then sent out to those harvested addresses, and the sender is spoofed, also using one of those email addresses.

Your own PC is not infected. Its just a case of ridding it out untill they use someone elses address,which may take a week or more,or change your email address.

23-08-2011, 12:02 PM
Many thanks for your advice, guys.

23-08-2011, 06:20 PM
I found that everyone who sends me an email from around middle of July was getting sent an automatic reply to visit a website.

Tracked it down to the XTRA webmail service: someone had hacked my account, activated the "on holiday" automatic response, and put the default text as whatever was in the spam emails everyone sending to me received. I only found it since the messages kept being sent even after I changed all my passwords everywhere.