I had some hideous shit like this happen to me, too, once. But the punchline, I hope, is that everything came out all right. (After you get violated even a little bit by the Internet, you never feel 100%. And I’m a pretty laid back, not-worried type of person.)
First, Amazon contacted me and asked if I just ordered a bunch of shit I didn’t order, like a couple of iPhones for a thousand dollars total, I believe, and I said, no. They said there was something funny about it that alerted them, but unlike you, Mr. Kaminki, (Hi! I have another friend in Finland, Jaana! :-), I am far from being a professional. So, Amazon said, cool. We stopped this order. We will have to “sanitize” your account, so do not use it for a few days. You can change your password now.
So I changed my Amazon password. PS A month later when I tried to use Amazon, there was an issue and I had to call them on the telephone in order to “clear” my account. Whoever was supposed to sanitize it did not follow up, so that it was in working order, and so I had to explain all of this mess to another person in some other call center somewhere on earth, and they finally helped me. I’ve never felt quite safe again about any online transactions, although, I do keep using the Internet just like pre-attack.
When my Amazon was hacked, the only reason they didn’t complete the order — I think — was that they didn’t know my email. So I changed my email password, too, that day. And while I was at it, I looked at my “account activity”. See, I don’t even know how to find your account activity, but I was seriously snooping around, that day. At my account activity after I changed my password successfully, I saw this: oh, yeah, yesterday you had two unsuccessful attempts to log on to your email. One was from in the USA. One was from Nigeria. That is a bad sign, because I have never been to Nigeria. But I’ve met a few guys from there. A couple of them were from my Chinese class that I took one year in Hangzhou, China, in 2007. They were nice guys, and I liked chatting with them and hanging out a bit, at the university. But I did not go clubbing with them at night, and another American who was also familiar with them told me they were into some shady business…like in the U.S. no big deal, maybe selling a little some’n som’en to your buddies at the bar at night. In China, however, they have the death penalty for drugs, and although they would never tell you how many executions take place…I’ll just ask you: do you think it is a good idea to go over to China as part of some cultural exchange (like China does with many African nations with whom they are trading partners, and like they do with Mexico, offering 50 Mexican students the opportunity to take Chinese class for a year, each year!)…and then in order to get some extra spending cash, SELL DRUGS?! See, to me, that is batshit crazy talk, right there; and that is why I did not want to go karaoke in the evening with the Nigerians I knew, or hang out at The Reggae Bar with them. Like I said, they were really nice fellows, and learning Chinese like I was trying to do, also, etc. But do not talk to me about any death penalty type crime activities, over there. China has things like “mobile execution vans”. Don’t have the Death Penalty in your local town prison? No problem — we’ll be right over with the van and take care of that legal matter you spoke to us about!
Whew! Sorry about that digression. I scared myself and flew back to the past for a moment.
Somebody tried to hack my Amazon and email account about a year ago. I used to blame everything on the Russian Mafia (because of media propaganda, in the United States we sometimes tend to blame certain crimes on Russian Mafia). Now, I think the Nigerian Mafia is in charge of all the cybercrimes, this year. I have seen “reality” television where old people have given away all of their childrens’ inheritance and been left paupers, living in public housing or with relatives after sending all their money to people who tell them they have won a million dollars. They just need to send the 3,000 dollars shipping and handling fee to cover transfer of money to their bank account. Then once they find a good fish, they either drain their account, or pass along the information to the rest of the gang who keep fleecing the poor bastard until he’s tapped out. On one such program, the children were at the father’s old family home. They found out from the bank that he no longer owned their childhood home. He had taken out a second and maybe a third mortgage, and now he was in debt, plus he didn’t own the home he lived in, and he was evicted. The kids came to help him move out.
At one point in this television program, the old victim of the scam looked into the camera, and said, “they can’t ALL be scams, right?!” Perhaps that is what some people do not understand. In some poor areas of Nigeria (or in any country; that is my example this week, for reasons I have stated above) there is an Internet cafe where some guys sit in there, 24 hours a day, sending out emails saying “You are the winner of $$$$!” “Just send me a thousand dollars and I’ll give it to you!” If they send out such a think one million times, there is still one person left on Planet Earth who has not been scammed on the Internet, yet who says “they can’t all be scams!” and send them money.
They ARE ALL scams. Please be careful out there, folks! There is someone who wants to take everything you own from you, today.
Thanks for this helpful, informative article, Joonas! You may have saved one person, at least, from becoming a new victim. :-( I hate this shit, you know? I believe in “personal property” like the old 18th Century British philosopher, John Locke. Everyone has the right to personal property, to own something. I do not believe it is morally right to take something from someone else.) Stealing is wrong, just fundamentally, morally wrong. Good luck to all the people. And to all the poor people in all the countries. I believe every person has the right to earn money to buy enough food to feed their children and families.