Spam, Scams, and Flim-Flams


With all due respect to Monty Python’s hilarious skit, as well as that most-favored canned meat that Hawaiians seem to love so much more than the rest of us, SPAM is basically any email or message you receive that you didn’t ask for and don’t want. As much people hate it, most SPAM is fairly innocuous, merely wanting to sell you something that may or may not make you richer, better looking, or otherwise more attractive to either or both genders. It can easily be relegated to the trash bin, assuming your SPAM filter didn’t already catch it and put it there before you even looked at it. Most SPAM filters are getting pretty good at that and, while it does waste a lot of time, it doesn’t usually cost you more than the time wasted to deal with it.


However, there is a type of SPAM that is not so easily dispensed with because it comes in many disguises and seeks to get into your wallet, computer files, or online information. Once it does, you face an uphill battle trying to right the wrongs that have been done. These are the SCAMS that come in the form of “phishing” emails. They are designed to trick you into clicking on a link in the email which takes you to a site that looks very much like one you have used, like a banking login. The site, however, is NOT your banking site (which you can verify if you look carefully at the address bar). If you put your login credentials into the the form, you will be opening your bank account to criminals and thieves.

The best way to avoid this scenario is to never click a link in an email. Instead, open your browser and type the address in manually. Along with that, you should never open ANY attachments in your email that you were not expecting, even if it looks like it came from someone you know. This is how viruses spread so efficiently.


The last thing I want to talk about is FLIM-FLAMS, but since this is why I started this post to begin with, here goes. One persistent and apparently successful, but in my opinion deceitful, tactic that a particular domain registration company (who will go unnamed) uses is to send you an official looking letter (yes, postal mail — not email) that appears to be an invoice. If you read it very carefully you’ll see that it is an OFFER to transfer your domain name to their registration system. The cost is $50 for 2-years, which is not terrible IF that’s what you want to do. Too many people, however, do not read the letter carefully enough and assume it really is an invoice — so they pay it. The unnamed company then initiates a transfer request for the domain, at which time I contact the customer, explain what I think is happening, and ask if they had intended to transfer their domain away.

I have never yet had one say that’s what they wanted.

But they already paid the invoice and getting the money back, while sometimes possible, is no easy task. It is an expensive lesson that can be avoided simply by reading carefully — OR by calling and asking us about it.

So, here’s the best advice you’re going to find: Call us. We’re here to answer whatever questions you may have about the Internet, your domain names, your website, and everything related to it. You can trust us to help you find the way and keep you out of the ditch. Powerserve has enormous resources of experience and information; but it’s up to you to access it.

706-826-1506 — What questions do you have?


2 thoughts on “Spam, Scams, and Flim-Flams

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