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Hijacked AOL address book?

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  • Hijacked AOL address book?

    Riddle me this, batmen and batwomen - People in my AOL address book have started reporting getting spam from my AOL email address.

    The interesting thing is that if I delete the address book content or export it to a csv file and store it locally, the outgoing spam stops. Also, the address book is set to autopopulate so if I send an email to anyone, that address gets added to the book. And, sure enough, in a day or two, that address will get a spam from my AOL address. So, no address book entries, no spam.

    Curiouser and curiouser, I discovered that the spam goes out even if my computer is off. I discovered this particular characteristic last week when I emailed a file from my AOL address to my Blackberry. This of course auto populated the AOL address book with my BB address. At the time it was the only address left in my AOL book.

    A day or two later, just as I was walking in the door from work, my BB went off, indicating a mail from my AOL address. It was a spam link for Viagara or something. At the time I was walking into my home office, looking at my desk machine sitting there off. Wha??

    Antivirus and scans like Malwarebytes show nothing on the home machine. The spam will start no matter what machine I send an AOL email from (work, home, laptop, whatever). As long as the outgoing address gets autopopulated into that AOL address book, that address will get spammed. This would seem to rule out a virus on my home computer that waits for new address book entries, then fires them off somewhere to be added to some big spamming process.

    So, does this mean the problem is central to AOL's online address books? It isn't resident anywhere on any local machine as far as I can tell. Ideas, anyone? Has anyone heard of this particular behaviour before?

    Frankly, I'm sick of this address anyway and would love to retire it. It's also more than a bit inconvenient to re-import the book in order to send a message, then delete the addresses again. It's the prospect and hassle of letting several hundred people know it's no longer in use that has me dragging my feet.
    Dang - I cut it three times and it's still too short!!...
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  • #2
    Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

    Post your problem here:

    http://www.techspot.com/vb/menu28.html

    You have a virus.
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    • #3
      Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

      Happened to me on my computer years ago...... a virus hijacked my address book.

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      • #4
        Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

        Mine is doing it with Bellsouth,I was getting calls from people I have not talk to in years ask why was I selling Viagara and of course one of e-mail address was my folks so I did what every non computer person would do and deleted everyone I am a phone guy anyway can't remember the last time I sent an e-mail
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        • #5
          Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

          Sounds like your pc turned into a spam bot. This is how the majority of spams are send.

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          • #6
            Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

            Deleting your address book is not the answer. If one virus is in there doing who knows what with your email, it is just as likely that there is another virus with a key logger stealing all of your passwords to all your online banking accounts. Only deleting your address book is naive and foolish.
            1998 Wellcraft Eclipse 24 Cuddy
            Volvo Penta Duo-Prop 7.4L "LK"

            2006 Sun Tracker Party Barge 21
            Mercury 90 4-Stroke FI
            "Common sense is not very common"
            "Failing to prepare is preparing to fail." -- John Wooden

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            • #7
              Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

              Check to see if the antivirus you are using has a forum that you can go and post these problems with them. They will help you solve what sounds like a hijacked computer. Make sure you keep us posted. There are several people on here that can help but your antivirus forum will know your vulnerabilities and will be able to recommend scanners and solutions that will work best for you.
              If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck.

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              • #8
                Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                Originally posted by bruceb58 View Post
                ...Only deleting your address book is naive and foolish.
                Your compliment aside, I agree that's not a sustainable way to operate. I was trying to make the point that the online address book content can be deleted (or populated) from any computer, anywhere (home, office, library, Mars, your place...) and the spam starts and stops accordingly to addresses in the book. I've never seen or heard of that behaviour before, hence my question to see if any of you had either. Perhaps it's more a question of my aol account being compromised and some remote entity is just monitoring and firing crap to anything that shows up in the address book.

                Your suggestion about Techspot was helpful. I'll try that as my own Malwarebytes scans show nothing on any of my machines. Their routine is more extensive and maybe will uncover something.
                Dang - I cut it three times and it's still too short!!...
                2004 Scout Dorado 175 Dual Console
                Yamaha 90 4-Stroke

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                • #9
                  Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                  Just a thought, have you try changing your password to the AOL act.? Using another pc of course then create several other mail acts. hotmail, gmail, etc. for testing. If you're getting spams to the test acts with the new password then your pc is compromised. If not then perhaps the aol act. is compromised which I imagine would be really hard to do without an infected pc.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                    I am only reading this because my wife's AOL account was hacked. Hers but not mine. All this occurred Saturday morning (April 2). Here is what it sounds like to me: If you had a PC virus, it could not have sent emails with your PC turned off (let's not be naive and foolish, here! :-). The fact that my wife's account was hacked but not mine, is also telling. We both use the SAME PC to log into AOL. What it seems like is there is a spambot on the AOL *server farm*. My wife's acct name starts with a "TR" and mine starts with a "LO", so if I am later victimized (I'll let you know) it would suggest the possibility that the bot is crawling in reverse alphabetical order. It might help to know the first two letters of your acct name (scoutabout).

                    Your original suggestion of wiping your central account's mailing list is a good "band aid." My own list is HUGE (going back over a decade), as is my wife's. You must consider the possibility (as suggested) that you have a key logger running on your PC, and avoid online purchases.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                      One year old thread.
                      1998 Wellcraft Eclipse 24 Cuddy
                      Volvo Penta Duo-Prop 7.4L "LK"

                      2006 Sun Tracker Party Barge 21
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                      "Common sense is not very common"
                      "Failing to prepare is preparing to fail." -- John Wooden

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                      • #12
                        Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                        Bruce is correct this is an old one. Landlubber, welcome to the forum. Please check the date of threads you post too.

                        However, just today one of my co-workers was complaining of having this problem with her AOL account. Other co-workers told her they've receiver spam V1agra emails from her. I didn't know what to tell her to do about it because if her email is done on a server, it's unlikely to be a virus on her local machine causing problems. Anyone know what could be happening?
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                        • #13
                          Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                          It is very easy to spoof an email address and make it look like it is coming from a certain person, my wife's company has it happen all the time, the key to finding out where is is actually coming from is to look at the raw header information with the IP numbers and server numbers included, normally when your talking about a spoofed email it will say, it is from joblo@aol.com and the simple header will say it is from joblo@123.456.78.90 but in truth it is not from there it has been routed through other servers and has originated from another server, often times from a European eastern block country.

                          There are tens of thousands of email databases that spammers keep just so they can run their scams and schemes, everytime you send an email, your email identification may be captured, or the person you send the note to, may be comprimised..

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                          • #14
                            Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                            True MT, except whatever it is, it has access to my co-workers entire address book.
                            2002 20' Hydra-Sports 202DC 200HP Yamaha HPDI
                            1976 18' Starcraft SuperSport 90HP Evinrude
                            Restoration thread https://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=357767

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                            • #15
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                              Re: Hijacked AOL address book?

                              Then she has a bug somewhere that has harvested her address book, it would be prudent to run a spybot program or download something like advanced system care to scan her computer, depending on how her computer is set up, she will still have email addresses on her computer, they will be stored in the cache or history files if she accesses her email online.

                              It could simply be that AOL has been compromised and address have been harvested and she ended up in the block that the hacker harvested..she should get a hold of the AOL support dept to see if there has been a compromise, as sometimes the big company will not always be so forthcoming when something has happened in their system.

                              But I would definitely report it to AOL

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