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FBI watching us?? Hmmm....
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loki74
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Las Vegas, NV
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:11 PM
 
Okay, no, no, this is not PL material here...

So today I get home, and I'm checking my email. and I get this:

From: <[email protected]>
To: <[email protected]>
Date: Tue Nov 22, 2005 08:16:19 AM PST
Subject: You_visit_illegal_websites
Attachments:
list337.zip



Dear Sir/Madam,

we have logged your IP-address on more than 30 illegal Websites.

Important:
Please answer our questions!
The list of questions are attached.


Yours faithfully,
Steven Allison



*** Federal Bureau of Investigation -FBI-
*** 935 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Room 3220
*** Washington, DC 20535
*** phone: (202) 324-3000

It seems fishy (I'll explain why momentarily) but the email address that sent it does say "@fbi.gov."

First of all, I am unaware of any illegal sites that I have visited.. I spend most of my time here, NewTek's bb, or browsing (not actually registered there) GCTalk/Spinquad. Or wikipedia... and lately B&H. Everything else is just google results

The second thing that seems odd is that my email is not [email protected]...

Third thing that got my attention is how uninformative the letter seems. It gives really no explaination of what program within the FBI this would be or anything. It provides no instructions. On where to send the answered questions, if it should be sent via email or via snail mail. Also, it seems to me that emails from the FBI would be HTML and have offical graphics and stuff.. not all plain and simple like that.

Fourth thing is this: "office" seems like an awfully ambiguous address. I mean, it is "@fbi.gov," but I dunno... is it possible to mask who sent an email, disguising it as an FBI thing?

Fifth, and this is the biggest red flag IMO, i downloaded the attachment, list337.zip, and tried to unzip it. I get this: (im using stuffit expander 7.0.3)

An error has occurred while expanding the file "File-packed_datainfo.2..exe" (Unexpected end of file).

Error #-39
Why would they send me an *.exe, and not like a word doc or PDF or something?

Lastly.. I went to the FBI's website, searched for "illegal websites" and didn't find anything conclusive.... so I searched for Steven Allison, and got no results whatsoever.

==============

I guess what I need answered is this:

1) Is it possible that I have visited 30 illegal websites without my knowing?
2) Can someone send an email, but make it look like it was sent by someone else (namely the FBI)?
3) Am I just being paranoid, and I had better reply ASAP, or does this look like an elaborate scam?

If the answers to any of these questions are blatantly obvious, please forgive my stupidity.

"In a world without walls or fences, what need have we for windows or gates?"
     
Tesseract
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:13 PM
 
It's a virus that's been going around the last few days. There is also already a thread about it.

Note: The .exe extension indicates a Windows program. You have nothing to worry about on a Mac, but don't forward this to any Windows-using friends.
     
Albert Pujols
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:14 PM
 
Its a virus email.
     
Captain Obvious
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:15 PM
 
Originally Posted by loki74

2) Can someone send an email, but make it look like it was sent by someone else (namely the FBI)?
3) Am I just being paranoid, and I had better reply ASAP, or does this look like an elaborate scam?

If the answers to any of these questions are blatantly obvious, please forgive my stupidity.
2) yes
3) yes

Barack Obama: Four more years of the Carter Presidency
     
OAW
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:15 PM
 
This is a spam email trying to dupe you into installing a virus/trojan with that EXE file. Delete it and go on about your business.

OAW
     
loki74  (op)
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by Tesseract
It's a virus that's been going around the last few days. There is also already a thread about it.

Note: The .exe extension indicates a Windows program. You have nothing to worry about on a Mac, but don't forward this to any Windows-using friends.
yea, thats the only reason I downloaded the attachment. I wouldnt dare try that on my PC!! While I wouldn't forward it to any of my PC using friends... j/k.

And I apologize for not searching for this... probably should have thought of that.

Captain Obvious: I'm assuming that 3) yes means yes it is an elaborate scam? or am I being paranoid? or maybe.. both?

Well, anyway... thanks you guys. I know I can always count on the NN!

"In a world without walls or fences, what need have we for windows or gates?"
     
tooki
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:49 PM
 
     
Pendergast
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Nov 22, 2005, 08:59 PM
 
Please remain by your computer while one of our "nice" agent knocks at your door for National Security purposes.
"Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves.”

Emile M. Cioran
     
Big Mac
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Nov 22, 2005, 09:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by loki74
yea, thats the only reason I downloaded the attachment. I wouldnt dare try that on my PC!! While I wouldn't forward it to any of my PC using friends... j/k.

And I apologize for not searching for this... probably should have thought of that.

Captain Obvious: I'm assuming that 3) yes means yes it is an elaborate scam? or am I being paranoid? or maybe.. both?

Well, anyway... thanks you guys. I know I can always count on the NN!
The most elaborate aspect of it is its broadcasting to a great many @mac.com email addresses. I'm still trying to figure out how that was accomplished. But yes, you can usually use a phony From: address and have your message appear to be from anyone you want. Only the headers indicate the message's true origin. It's always been that way, and it will remain that way until there's widespread consensus installation of sender identification encoders like Domain Keys or SPF. Don't feel bad because you didn't recognize this fact about From addresses earlier - just start familiarizing yourself with email headers.

"The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground." TJ
     
miacomet
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Nov 22, 2005, 10:23 PM
 
I got that email too. But I didn't try to unstuff the file because I assumed it was a virus.
     
rambo47
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Nov 22, 2005, 11:03 PM
 
I got about 10 of 'em, all at once. Some one is trying just a little too hard.
     
   
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