how safe are online forums?

Discussion in 'other security issues & news' started by wutsup, Apr 30, 2010.

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  1. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    hey guys/gals, i know this forum is of course safe :),

    but when i was younger i signed up on some forums that are shady and i dont actually remember what forums it was but i know that i gave out my email address to them just you like you would when you sign on any other forum.

    is it possible for them to spam your email account and give out your email to hackers or what not.
     
  2. twl845

    twl845 Registered Member

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    If you lie down with dogs you wake up with fleas. If you register on a "questionable" forum, you're at their mercy, so don't give out any info about yourself and you won't get hurt. :ninja:
     
  3. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    right, i remembered some of my usernames and passwords to those forums and i changed my real email that i used to some random jibberish one. would that be sufficient enough?
     
  4. twl845

    twl845 Registered Member

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    Other than they will probably drop a cookie on you I guess that would do it.
     
  5. MrBrian

    MrBrian Registered Member

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    Some website reputation services, such as McAfee SiteAdvisor, test for spamming.
     
  6. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    tracking cookie? even if you dont visit the website anymore?
     
  7. Carver

    Carver Registered Member

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    Of course you could just delete the cookie after you leave the website.
     
  8. arran

    arran Registered Member

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    Passwords.

    always better to use a separate password to the forum you log into, some sites can be configured to record passwords. also member passwords are stored in a forums data bass as a md5 hash code , I have read that this md5 hash code can be cracked/converted or translated into the real password not sure how true this is tho. Maybe some one else can elaborate on this?

    Email.

    better to not use your main email address as forum webmasters can hand over your email adressess to spammers and hackers.

    PM's.

    I'm not sure about vBulletin and other forum brands but I know with Invision Power Board Members PM's are logged and stored in the Forums Data Base. I found this out by accident 1 day when I was looking thru the data base of a forum that I used to run.
     
  9. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    you mean like a different password from your email address and your other important stuff right? yea just changed the passwords and changed my email from my real one to some random bogus one on those shady forums that i joined awhile ago.

    i changed my email to from my real one to something like 123@123.com. that would be fine right?
     
  10. arran

    arran Registered Member

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    correct I know its an inconvenience but its not wise to use the same password all over the internet.
     
  11. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    yea i already do that. the forums i joined werent the safest (ill be honest and admit that one was a pirating game forum and another was a free movie forum), but that was about 2 years ago and since then i have stopped that kind of illegal activity.

    also i changed my email on those forums from my real one to a fake one. they shouldnt have my real email anymore right?
     
  12. Cudni

    Cudni Global Moderator

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    if, whatever reason, they bothered to write it down/capture it before you changed it then yes they do otherwise no. Most probably no :)
     
  13. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    AFAIK, there's no way to be sure of that - who's to say they haven't squirreled away any info you've given them at any point in time?. If your "good" email address has already been given out, then changing what the forums have on record as current is moot as far as the spammers are concerned.

    Have you had a spam problem? If not, maybe you're lucky enough to have changed it now and you decreased the probability at least, of further vulnerability.
     
  14. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    yes ive been getting spam about free meds from random people(which are not real) from gmail, yahoo, hotmail etc etc. so ive been trying to find out wheres it been coming from. other than that my email works fine. and i dunno if its specifically from those forums i mentioned or from my ISP.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2010
  15. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

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    Man, be caureful, THIS IS THE MOST INSECURE FORUM I'VE EVER VISITED :D
     
  16. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Well, you're not alone. I typically use a free email account, yahoo, etc. to register at forums and that account is FULL of spam. As careful as I've tried to be with my ISP email account (never used for a forum), I still get a half dozen spam emails a day. Fortunately, Norton, my ISP themselves, and a few filtering rules I have in my mail client seem to do a decent job of flagging the spam accurately and routing it directly to the junk folder.

    For me spam is one of those things in life like mosquitoes, gnats, and door to door salespeople. Hard to avoid altogether but still just a background noise in the bigger scheme of things.

    If it's feasible to change your main email address and update the contacts that really matter (and can be trusted), it may be worth the effort to declutter your email, at least for a while.;)
     
  17. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

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    I also have a spam mail (Which is a Yahoo Mail) and it's more than full of spam, it's OVERLOADED with it hahahahahaha

    I've never ever received a spam mail in my main email :D
    Probably because i'm too careful :rolleyes:
     
  18. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Well, I hope your caution pays off but it may be only a matter of time.:D

    Actually, my yahoo mail does a decent job of spam filtering too. In a typical day, I may get 6 legitimate emails in my inbox and 30 true spammers directly to the spam folder. In a week, I may only get one spammer into my inbox, usually telling me that if I will only provide my bank details, I can get a substantial cut of an inheritance from a long lost relative that died recently.:argh: :cautious:
     
  19. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    the spam i get is in the email that i use provived to me by my isp.

    the spam is always about FREE meds, cheap from canada, etc etc. and its from legit email sites like gmail, yahoo, etc
     
  20. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Spammers can get free email accounts as easily as you or I can. That does nothing to establish their legitimacy. So, the OT answer for you seems to me to be that online forums (including this one) are only as safe as your precautions constrain them to be.

    Sounds like now you need to figure out how to deal with the spam that you have. Getting a new email address from your ISP, getting a different ISP, or starting to filter out the spam seem like the most obvious alternatives.

    You can change all the forums' email addresses you want to, "legit" or not, "real" or not, but the hard truth is, regardless of how you got there, you're in the spammers hands for the moment.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2010
  21. twl845

    twl845 Registered Member

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    You can avoid all the spam if you get Mailwasher free or Pro. See Firetrust.com. I've been using it for maybe 10 years. :)
     
  22. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    is there anyway to block the spam? in the settings its already set to block spam through my isp. but it doesnt seem to do much.
     
  23. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    well i just made a new email with my isp and gonna delete the old one thats been getting spammed as soon as i get the confirmation that my ebay account has been closed :D
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2010
  24. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Good. Have you got a free web email account for forums and other than very high trust activities?
     
  25. wutsup

    wutsup Registered Member

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    yes i have another one. after i delete the old email (i used that to register on the forums here) should i change it? or can i just leave it as the deleted one lol
     
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