Has Angelina Jolie invited you to join Facebook?

The last days we have seen a massive spam attack claiming that Angelina Jolie has invited you to Facebook. As usual the e-mail is well formed and appears to be a normal Facebook e-mail. However, instead they are linking to sites containing viruses or selling certain medications. The spammer sending these spam is currently the largest spammer according to Spamhaus and they have hundreds of domains registered. They are using bot nets and Chinese web hosting for their web site.

We are also seeing a lot of Twitter spam e-mails. These messages claiming someone was trying to steal your Twitter account password. To fix that you it say that you should open the attach file, which obviously is a virus. (Just in case you don’t get this, you should NOT open that file if you receive one of these messages :-)). My guess is that the virus is yet another trojan converting your computer to a spam sending machine.

So, the trend is pretty clear: spammers also try to use social media – or at least the names of well known social media services like Facebook and Twitter.

Spam appearing like Twitter e-mail updates

Maybe  you have seen the spam messages that looks just like a normal update from Twitter? The design and texts are identical to the Twitter original, informing you that you have 3 new messages or that someone has started to follow you. However, when you click the link that appears to go to Twitter, you end up at some drug store that sells these famous blue pills – or at least a cheap copy of them. Continue reading “Spam appearing like Twitter e-mail updates” »

Focus on scalability, stability and user experience

Lately we have been working hard on handling the recent growth we have had. As you probably have noticed we have had some stability problems and we apologize for that. The last weeks we have made some changes to our infrastructure and started to migrate to new servers. This work will increase performance and provide better fail over than before. We hope this work will be finished within the next 2 – 3 weeks. We’re expecting to carry out the remaining changes without any disruptions to the service.

As a necessary step we have also moved some of our system to the cloud. This will improve the performance of our database servers and will also let us handle backups more efficiently.

In parallel with this work we have also worked on making minor changes to improve the experience of the overall service, such as improving your SpamDrain reports, adding support for payments in USD and support for payments through Paypal. We have also updated our price lists so they are easier to read. The next step on the web site is to make the sign up and on boarding as easy as in our mobile applications. That will be exciting work and hopefully we will be able to help even more people to get rid of annoying and time consuming spam messages.

Until next time – we wish you e-mail peace of mind and hope that you continue reporting your spam to us. That’s what makes the SpamDrain service so fantastic!

Google accounts sending spam to contacts in address book

Have you experienced that spam messages are sent from your address? I can guarantee you that you’re not alone. This happens to all of us. The reason is that the protocol used for sending e-mail, SMTP, is a fairly simple protocol designed in the very beginning of the internet’s history. Anyone may basically put any e-mail address in the From field when sending a message. Spammers use this a lot to make it appear like a friend or a colleague is sending you an important message. Continue reading “Google accounts sending spam to contacts in address book” »

One e-mail virus for every tenth valid message

The last 5-6 weeks we have seen an increase of viruses blocked by the SpamDrain filter. The virus proportion has raised to levels around 2 – 3 %. This doesn’t sound much but compare this 0.2 -1 % for previous weeks. Two per cent corresponds to 15,000 viruses per week for our customers only. Since the spam proportion is around 80 % it means that for every tenth valid message there is a virus e-mail. Imagine the damage all these viruses could have made. Continue reading “One e-mail virus for every tenth valid message” »