SHORT-CIRCUITING SPAMBOTS

When you get a Friend request on Facebook, do not just accept it.  It maspamboty be your typical giggly, wiggly-jiggly, elastic, plastic-fantastic spambot.  You know the photos.  Angling downward, maybe the top of the head is cut off, but the bra and boobs and crotch and panties areas will still be intact in the photo.

If you get past that one intact, the photos will get more sophisticated.  Maybe next time, it will be some middle-aged guy with glasses, or even someone who appears to be from a foreign country.

I must have pissed somebody off somewhere, because I am getting about one of these a day now.  Maybe the Liberals are seeing them too, I do not know for sure.  It may be endemic to Facebook.  I know I am getting these requests.

I must have some powerful new Friends.

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So, how do you know if the person who has sent you a Friend request is legitimate?

These characteristics are typical for spambots:

1.)        Check out their Friends.  They may have one, or most typically, none.  They keep getting blocked!

2.)        Check when they started with Facebook.  If you joined in 2011, why do you only have, like, NO Facebook Friends?  This start information also may not be available.  You may just see “Born.”  You may scroll through two or three years, with nothing there.

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3.)        Check their photos and albums.  If they have no photos at all other than their wall and profile photo, they may be a spambot.  If you see two profile photos in the folder that are exactly the same, congratulations!  You have a winner there.

4.)        Go into their photo albums.  Most spambots I see have an album with two or four photos in it.  Look, and you will see no photos are available.  These I assume are other incarnations, for the profile photo.

5.)        Spambots generally have a High School listed and some sort of career choice.  But the career choice usually is not a real place you can find on an internet search.  Like drummer for the Jumbo Jimbo Band, or something stupid like that.

6.)        The names of spambots are sometimes strange.  You may find that there are only 23 families in the U.S. with that surname.  They may use a nickname of an euphemism, like Hoss Cart or something.  Check them out in a search engine outside of Facebook.

7.)        Sometimes checking out their occupationin a searche engine provides results that lead you back to Facebook, and to another spambot-looking character.  Not a good sign.

8.)        You will see nothing on their timeline, or they will have one or two very recent posts.  Like for today.  They keep getting blocked, so they have no real timeline.

9.)        At best, you will find one or two likes.  Generally none.  And they will be recent.  Like maybe today.

10.)      Message them.  They generally do not reply.

11.)      If a spambot happens to reply, the reply will usually have little to do with your message.

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12.)      If you Friend one, everyone of their messages to you will be posted on your timeline.  It may be inappropriate, like, “I’m very lonely, let’s videoconference, and hook up.”  Your wife or boyfriend will like to see that on your timeline.

13.)      Your new spambot Friend will not take “No” for an answer.  You will keep getting messaged.  If you happen to message back and forth, you will realize that no one can possibly type that fast.  Plus, put in all those emoticons.

14.)      If you reply, “No one can possibly type that fast.  Are you sure that you are not a machine or something?”  Your spambot friend will keep replying as if it did not read your reply.  Which it didn’t.  This messaging back and then reading instantaneous, inane, non-contextual replies can be amusing for a little while.  But it gets old pretty quickly.

15.)      Report the spambot to Facebook and block it, once you are sure that it is one.  They should do something about it.  After all, how many times have you been in” Facebook Jail?”

16.)      Go into your email and delete all spambot messages after you have blocked it on Facebook, but before you run your protective software.  If your email is linked to your Facebook account, old spambot messages will still be in there, ready to still download their nastiness.  You need to get rid of them too, as blocking and reporting the spambot only works within Facebook and for any new email messages.

17.)      Then run your security software.  Who knows what sort of cookies, worms, Trojans, or viruses are on your hard drive now?  Or, are there are child porn images embedded in there, searches of subversive links and pages, or bomb-making directions hidden there, for law enforcement to now “find”?  Or, is it just some virtual, non-protoplasmic Obama supporter being annoying, or just DHS doing what it imagines to be its job, by snooping around on your hard drive?  Who knows?  Maybe all of the above.  I can only conjecture about the underlying purposes for spambots.  But I would bet your local cop a donut that it is not just to be annoying.

Enjoy your new spambot Friends on Facebook.  It would be amusing to have a second computer, set up your own spambot account there, recommend that spambot account to all of your new spambot Friends, and see how many of them you could collect there in one place.  See how many of them Friend each other.  Then, have them all Friend Obama.

Well, Biden, anyway.

Be careful out there, America.

Gary W. Harper