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Oracle Tips by Burleson 

Web Stalkers
Chapter 13 - Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam

Learning More about Spam

The “Decode URL” function can then be used to help identify the true source of this address.  Figure 13.9 below shows the results of this function for both the link and its associated location.  It is easy to see that the web page the user would be directed to is not part of the bank’s website.  In fact, it is not even registered with DNS.

Figure 13.9 - DNS lookup can be used to validate and address.


The main lesson to take from this example is that caution is advised when dealing with links associated with unsolicited e-mail.  Researching before acting can save time and money in the end.  Whether simply making a phone call to the customer service department of the company in question to verify their e-mail message, or using some of the sophisticated tools that have been presented, be sure to investigate.

A Case Study in Spam

Several weeks after taking a family vacation in San Diego, one person received the message shown in Figure 13.10 below:

Figure 13.10 - Spam sometimes contains offers that are too good to be true.


The recipient of this message remembered that he had supplied his secondary e-mail address when checking into a hotel while on vacation.  Whether his e-mail address was sold to a marketing company or the hotel system was hacked and his address stolen really makes no difference.  He is now the target of a marketing campaign. 

Is the offer legitimate?  Consider carefully who the message is from;  This unusual address should make the recipient suspicious.  If the message had been received from, the recipient might have more confidence since this is the address for the San Diego Chamber of Commerce.  Savvy users always research and investigate.

The above text is an excerpt from:

Web Stalkers
Protect yourself from Internet Criminals & Psychopaths
ISBN 0-97-45993-9-5

by Donald K. Burleson, Stephen Andert

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