I’ve said before that the doom and gloom some people claim regarding computer security and IM is a bunch of hooey – and I still think it is – but this evening the library received its first piece of SPIM. The fact that something fishy was going on was so ridiculously apparent. Here’s what the message was.
patron: http://18.104.22.168/648f6942e1ef7554f57d509b7ae1eb52/other/msdos.zip C:\msdos.pif r
The message, of course, was a link but I’m not going to reproduce that here. Would this message have raised a red flag for you? Instead of clicking, I responded back to see what would happen. Again, it was an automated response:
patron: Find out who’s blocking you on AIM, Download it free from http://www.block-checker.com
Then the actual IMer responded, and we had a conversation:
patron: r u bored or something
thommyford: no, you IMed me, i think your computer might have a IM virus or something
patron: ya it does
patron: im like crying
patron: i dont know how to kill it
thommyford: do you need help getting rid of it?
I did a quick search to find out about “block checker” and found some removal instructions, which I copy/pasted to the patron. It was disappointing to finally get one of these IMs, but at least it turned into a positive library transaction.