AOL E-Mail Virus and Other Things

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by js, Dec 4, 2012.

  1. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    Hi. I hope one of my disboard friends can help:
    My aol account seems to be sending all different kinds of attchments and e-mails to all of my contacts. It stops for a while and then starts up again.
    I use to tell my friends/family please don't open if it doesn't have a subject line but now the e-mails coming from from aol account have subject lines.
    These e-mails go to all my contacts, including those at my ds's school, but they too know I have a virus.
    I tried to find how I can call aol but I can't for the life of me find how I can talk to a person. Is this something that can be fixed or do I need to change my aol name, which I hate to do since I have had it for a VERY long time.

    Also, when I get new e-mails, it goes to my "chats" and from there I have to select all of them and move to my New Mail, I don't know how that started or why and I cannot fix that too but that is the least of my problems.

    Do you think I need to change my aol account, which now with Christmas shopping online is all I have used. GGGRRR... Thanks for any and all the help you can give me.
     
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  3. ready123go

    ready123go DIS Veteran

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    Offhand, I'd say your email account has been compromised (hacked). You can tell by looking in your "Sent" folder. If there is a bunch of stuff in there that you did not send, then you have been compromised.

    "When is the last time you changed your password? Change it to something fairly complex and not anything similar to your username. For instance, "Disney#BoardUser1". Be certain to keep it something you can remember, but still write it down. Before you change the password get into "My Account" and correct your alternate email, if changed. See if that works. Good luck. Let us know.
     
  4. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    Thank you. I called our IT guy at work and he told me the same thing but when I looked in sent or trash, it did not show that I sent anything. So, knowing this, what do you think?
    I changed my password. When you are telling me to go to alternate email, are you saying to do this because of the new e-mails going to saved chats?

    Please let me know and THANKS soo much.
     
  5. KAMLEM

    KAMLEM DIS Veteran<br><font color=blue>Likes her little p

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    I'm having a similar issue but it's related to facebook. I get emails from people who I am friends with on facebook but when I look at the email address it's not really those people sending the emails. They always have links but I don't open them.
     
  6. ready123go

    ready123go DIS Veteran

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    In the upper right-hand corner of your email screen you will have a drop-down menu labeled "OPTIONS". Click the drop-down menu and select "MY ACCOUNT".
    This will take you to "AOL ACCOUNT & SETTINGS" where you can see "MANAGE MY ACCOUNT" & "CUSTOMIZE MY SETTINGS". Select "MANAGE MY ACCOUNT". You will probably have to log in again.
    This will take you to "SERVICE OPTIONS, "ACCOUNT OPTIONS" & "USERNAME OPTIONS". Under "ACCOUNT OPTIONS" select "UPDATE MY CONTACT INFORMATION".
    This will take you to "CONTACT INFORMATION" where you will see "FIRST NAME", "LAST NAME", "ALTERNATE EMAIL" (and some other categories).
    Fix "ALTERNATE EMAIL" if it is wrong. Your alternate email is where you get notifications of password changes and other changes to your account. Mine is my hotmail account, for example. Fix anything else that is wrong.
    Next go back to "MAIN" ("SERVICE OPTIONS, "ACCOUNT OPTIONS" & "USERNAME OPTIONS"). Under "ACCOUNT OPTIONS", select "MANAGE MY SITE PERMISSIONS".
    This will show you authorized (by you) sites that have access to your account. If you do not recognize these sites, then shut them down (I don't have any, so I don't really know about this feature).
    Lastly, if you want you can go back to "MAIN" and select "VIEW MY ACCOUNT ACTIVITY" to see if there is anything of interest.
    After you do this stuff, change your password again, just as an additional preventative measure.
    And change your password about every 90 days or so.
     
  7. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    THANK YOU VERY MUCH!
    I just printed out this thread so I have your post and going to do this now.
    I will report back.
     
  8. ready123go

    ready123go DIS Veteran

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    We get some email for business from private email accounts, so this happens to us from time to time. I don't open them either. And I try to let the individuals know that their account has been hacked, so they can change their passwords.
    It's such a pain for everyone. :sad2:
     
  9. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    Thank you VERY much for taking the time to type out ALL this information for me. I will keep it so I can always take a look but:
    For Alternate E-Mail: It was my aol and it is spelled correctly
    Manage Site Permission: I did not have anyone authorized
    View My Account: Nothing

    What the heck is it? I check my aol at work and home. It is sending out e-mail messages when I'm not on aol at home or work?
    Someone at my ds's school just sent me an e-mail saying they couldn't open my attachment but of course it was not me. I responded back and asked her to please don't open anything from my aol and she said that someone else had mentioned that to her (so they are talking about my account, which I feel terrible).

    I have had my aol since 1998 and it is my name so I do like it for business and since I have had so long everyone has it. I am still getting stuff shipped for Christmas since I do almost all my shopping online so need to keep it active. What do you think is going on?

    THANK YOU.
     
  10. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    I don't have facebook or I'm sure this would happen to me too.
    I hope you get it fixed.
     
  11. arthuruscg

    arthuruscg DIS Veteran

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    Make sure you change your password and your alternative email address should be another email address. The purpose is to notify you if something has happened to your account. If someone else has control of your account then they are deleting the messages before you even get them.

    It sounds your home or work or any other devices that you used to access the account is infected and it is turned into a bot. Do a "full" antivirus scan with up to date definitions. This includes smart phone and the no virus can get me "iphone" and "macs".

    It might all be for nothing though, because it sounds like they skimmed off your address book and are sending emails from a different account that are disguised as your email address.
    If that is the case, there is not much you can do. Because they are no longer sending them form your account, so changing your password only prevents future hacks.

    The only thing you can do is to tell people to mark your aol email address as spam and cut ties with AOL. Typically when you set up a new email address you can upload or pull your email address book from another email account.

    You might be forced to change your email address anyways because if your account is still sending spam, it will eventually get flagged and anything from your address will get flagged as spam.
     
  12. Imzadi

    Imzadi Saved by an angel in a trenchcoat

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    I think you need to change free email providers. It's the 21st century. AOL hasn't been relevant as a service or even grown in a couple decades.

    Gmail, owned by Google, their stocks are at $670 per share, today. Google is estimated to be worth $192 billion. What that means is they have $670 per share more than AOL and more than most email/IT companies to put into research & development to stay current and hopefully ahead of hackers & viruses. How much money does AOL have??? You can't even find a real, live person to talk to. Google is not dropping off the planet any time soon, the way AOL has.

    Gmail has an automatic antivirus filter built into their program. It will not knowingly SEND OUT or include a known virus in an attachment. Nor will it ALLOW TO BE OPENED any email attachment with a virus in it. It automatically filters any attachment in emails beforeopening, in case it missed it while incoming. Part of its money & research is to stay current on the latest viruses.

    It has one of the best Spam filters out. I get spam maybe once every 6 months. When I do get one, I just have to hit the spam button and I am never bothered by another like spam again. Compare that to Yahoo email which has, according to many, many people, a horrible spam filter. Plus their email program freezes a lot. Well, Yahoo's stocks are at $19 today, and it shows in what they lack in quality & services. :p

    Gmail also gives a double layer of protection in that it gives the option for double verification when entering passwords, if one needs it.

    While changing email providers is a pain & hassle for you, it is a courtesy to do that for all your contacts, so they won't receive email viruses or have their email addresses shared on hacker lists. You will only have to change email addresses once. Pick a great, strong password as another poster suggested. Then you and all your contacts will be free of your current problems. :thumbsup2



    (No, I do not work for Google. All usual disclaimers apply. :) )
     
  13. dsanner106

    dsanner106 DIS Veteran

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    Nothing wrong specifically with AOL, I still keep my old account open but have google and a couple others. I have had no problems on AOL and several with google. AOL includes the full mcaffee antivirus at no charge, and runs constantly if you choose to enable it. They also have customer service beyond what the "free" internet services offer and don't have to rely on ads or selling account information to support their service.
     
  14. ols386

    ols386 I want to live at Disney World!!

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    Same thing happened to my aol account a couple of years ago.

    I called AOL and closed my account, but cannot remember the number I called.

    Somewhere on your AOL account settings, there is a section called "filters". If you can find that, go in and TURN off any filters that are set (unless you did the filters yourself).

    The hacker goes in and sets your filters to be what they want, and I think the only way to get those messages to quit going out to your contacts, is to turn off those "filters".

    Or at least this is what happened when my account was hacked into.
     
  15. ready123go

    ready123go DIS Veteran

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    For the most part, I concur with arthuruscg .

    I agree with arthuruscg, use another email address, not your own aol address. Get one through GMail (Google) like Imzadi recommended. Or use one you already own at hotmail, yahoo, etc.


    Again, I agree with arthuruscg, it is likely some malware. Keep your anti-virus current and run full scans often. I have two anti-virus programs, Norton & Ad-Aware. I update & run each frequently (not at the same time). It could also be your work computer, so be certain to check the Anti-Virus on that (if at all possible).

    Ask the people receiving the fake emails to forward one or two to you. It might be an email with a similar name, but off by one letter. If that is the case, you can then let everyone know that that email address is a bad one. They can block the bad one(s), and you can keep yours.

    If it is a case of emails being sent from a remote, masked location, then I have no idea what you can do. :sad2: I think you would have to do some additional research online. This is how I solve many of my technology issues, unfortunately I often have issues before they come to light :headache:. As a last resort you might have to abandon your address.

    I hope you can resolve this!
     
  16. ready123go

    ready123go DIS Veteran

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    I never would have thought of filters. Try the filters that ols386 suggests (under "SETTINGS").
     
  17. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    As someone that is computer challenged (well I can get on and do things but not fix anything) I VERY VERY much appreciate that you all have spelled out step by step what I need to do.
    I have printed out your posts and going to try to do everything you told me.
    I will report back and THANK YOU!
     
  18. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    OK, I just fixed my alternate e-mail to a new hotmail account.

    But, I'm just thinking that my dh also uses the laptop (we share it).
    He also has an aol account. So could this still be a virus in my laptop even though my ds's aol e-mail account is not sending out random e-mails?

    Thanks so much!
     
  19. ready123go

    ready123go DIS Veteran

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    You are welcome!

    I was thinking about your problem yesterday and the more I thought about it the less I liked the malware theory. So I used this new information and did a little research this morning. I found some answers on AOL How do I know if my account has been compromised (hacked)?, Compromised Accounts and Spoofed Emails. Given your recent info (2 accounts, one is sending emails), I think you are the victim of 'spoofing'. It is possible at some point that they mined your address book and are are now sending emails to your contacts.
     
  20. arthuruscg

    arthuruscg DIS Veteran

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    If your email address as been spoofed, all you can do it move on to a new email address.
    The hacker/ spoofer is making his email address with your email address as the "sender". So eventually the receivers email program will tag your email address as a spam address and will automatically send them to the junk/spam folder or block them all together (gmail does this).
     
  21. js

    js This is my Tag!

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    Thank you VERY much! You have been a wonderful help to me.
    I created a new hotmail account (since that is the first e-mail account that you mentioned in your post LOL). So, your opinion is that I should just cancel my aol account for good? :confused: I hate to do it but I will.

    Thank you. So you, too, think I should just cancel my aol account for good?
    I think I will do this after Christmas when all my Christmas gifts have come in since I follow the tracking and use my aol on all the invoices.

    Please let me know if that is what you are both telling me and THANK YOU VERY VERY much for all your help! I honestly greatly appreciate it!
     

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