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Fly's avatar

What can I do about this e-mail/spam issue? (See details)

Asked by Fly (8675 points ) April 15th, 2013

This is a little complicated, so sorry for the long explanation!

Somehow my e-mail information has been compromised, and someone has been sending e-mails from a separate account pretending to be me. Only one person seems to have gotten one of these e-mail so far, though. The e-mails are also coming from a .edu account, which leads me to think it was my school e-mail address that was compromised (since there have been security issues in the past), but I have only e-mailed said person from my main gmail account. The accounts are POP3 linked so that my school e-mails are forwarded to my gmail, so that might have something to do with it.

A little over a week ago, I also got an e-mail that I had signed up for something that I had never even heard of, and it appears that someone else tried to use my e-mail address to sign up for this service. I immediately changed the passwords to the account and added security questions so that the person couldn’t get in, but the company’s customer service is terrible (EA Origins) and I am having trouble getting them to delete the account.

I have already changed the passwords and upped security on all of my e-mail accounts, but I guess the sender already had all the information they needed and the e-mails keep going out. I don’t want to delete my e-mail addresses, and since changing my passwords and increasing security didn’t seem to do anything, I’m not sure that deleting my accounts would even help the situation. My main e-mail account is a gmail, and I searched high and low for signs of being hacked (checked for other IP addresses, forwarding addresses, etc.) and I can’t find anything to show that this was the account that was compromised, which combined with the .edu sender and past security breaches, leads me to think it is my school e-mail was hacked- in this case, it’s not even possible for me to delete it, and I don’t know where to even begin with a Microsoft Outlook e-mail.

So essentially, I don’t know what I can do to tackle this problem, or if there is anything I can do about it at all, since it’s a remote e-mail account. I’m usually pretty good about this kind of thing and keeping my information private. Is there any way I can get the e-mail address closed, or is there anything else I can do about it? Thanks in advance!

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11 Answers

geeky_mama's avatar

Any chance you can contact the school’s IT department and request either to close the .edu account or if you still need the school email account..to have it changed to a new username/password and close the one that’s been comprised?

Look on the school’s staff directory for folks in IT ..there will be someone whose in charge of email accounts would should be able to help you..

gambitking's avatar

With hacked emails, you can’t really tell much from the extention (.edu), although it is possible your school email has something to do with it.

What you need to do: Inform the school’s IT staff, change your gmail and your school email / account login credentials. Choose very secure passwords. Change security questions too, and if you have to, create a new email address (and secure password) as a secondary email address for password changes, etc. on the primary account.

Inform your contacts of the potential malicious activity so they don’t inadvertently become victims themselves.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Remember that opten spam emails have spoofed return addresses that cam be anything. If you changed the password it is doubtful they are coming from your account. If you want to make sure, print out the full headers and look at the IP address.

OTOH There is a chance your pc has a keylogger on it placed there by some slimy individual who had access to it. If one is there they would know your password.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

@Fly Does this person that received the email follow you or vicea versa on FB?

Fly's avatar

@Tropical_Willie Yes, we are friends on Facebook.

Fly's avatar

She sent me one of the e-mails so I would have a point of reference, so I’ll post it here in case it helps:

To: [friend@email]
Subject: question
From: [fake email]@edu
Date: Sun, 14 Apr 2013 06:59:10 -0800

Hey [person’s name].
How are you? Look at this [link]
Do you know about this site?

Sincerely yours,
[My name]

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Have email addresses on FB the one that got Spammed? That maybe the crossover for email addresses. My sister’s name but not her email has ended up in my Spam folder.

Fly's avatar

Ah, I see your edit, @Tropical_Willie. I, too, have fallen victim to auto correct- it happens. :)

Edit: I see what you were asking now. At first I thought you meant the e-mail address that Facebook assigns you, but the e-mail account spammed is attached to and visible on her profile.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

It’s the phone I’m using.

Fly's avatar

Just went through and deleted any apps that I don’t recognize and/or am not using just in case. I am wondering if it is possible that her e-mail was actually the one compromised, and as a result my own, because I can’t find any evidence of it on my own accounts.

augustlan's avatar

And now it’s happening to me (I’m @Fly‘s mom, in case you didn’t know). Same exact email was sent to the same person, only signed with my name and using a different fake email address and extension (mine was a .com). I don’t even know where to begin looking, because none of my email addresses are used in the email. Grrrr.

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