Ramblings of an old Doc
“This is probably the best phishing scam I’ve ever seen.”
Published on September 2, 2017 By DrJBHL In Personal Computing

 

No, Gordon [Gekko]: Greed is not good. Google really should learn this...and be responsible as to just who and what come up as valid search results, especially when they get first place result because of advertising dollars.

"Darknetmarkets.org, for all intents and purposes, is a "real" website. Its logo looks to be made of chopped-up cocaine, and the site is filled with legitimate-seeming resources for anybody looking to buy drugs on the darknet. News articles populate its homepage, and the site features how-tos on topics like using "mixing" services to hide your Bitcoin transactions from the authorities. A sidebar contains links to the "top" sites to buy drugs on the darknet. But there's a catch: The advice is real, but the links send unsuspecting users to fake versions of real "mixing" services designed to steal money from victims. The supposed darknet markets linked on the sidebar also appear to be faithful recreations of the real deal. One link sends the user to a working login page for AlphaBay, which was at one time the largest darknet market around. AlphaBay was taken offline in July during an internationally-coordinated law enforcement operation." - Motherboard (linked above)

 A site that reviews and compares information security products, CompariTech, spotted this elaborate scam first.

"This is pulling people in who are looking for a particular phrase on google, lulling them into a false sense of security with good information, and then hitting them with a dodgy link to steal their money," said Lee Munson, a CompariTech security researcher, over the phone. "Whoever has done this has done their homework. This is probably the best phishing scam I've ever seen." - Motherboard

Google has not responded to this for the record. They simply say, all phishing sites should be reported to Google. 

I think that's rather inadequate.

I think that the links in the first, say 250 search results can be examined and compared by algorithm and when not found to be original, genuine links to the sites named the result be put aside for separate examination, and not be put in the list of search results until verified to be genuine.

Google has responsibility here, whether the phishing is top notch or not. After all, if the computing power of Google isn't being used to present safe and good results, then just what is it being used for, email on Mars?

 

 


Comments
on Sep 02, 2017

I hope they hang'em by their #*($#&% when they're caught! And as far as Google.... well, I won't say what I want to, many would find it offensive. 

on Sep 02, 2017

I never use Google for search.  Good advice, IMO.

on Sep 13, 2017

Daiwa

I never use Google for search.

 Me, either!  Google just isn't trustworthy and has too many shady practices.

on Sep 13, 2017

I don't disagree with the premise, spot on.

That's really applicable if your looking for drugs, porn or other dark sites.

Google is great for surfing used car dealers, why my toilet randomly fills and most other non-offensive kind of searches. Sort of depends on your dark side.

And yes, Google sorts search results to satisfy their customers but those are usually marked with the "ad" sticker.

 

on Sep 13, 2017

starkers


Quoting Daiwa,

I never use Google for search.



 Me, either!  Google just isn't trustworthy and has too many shady practices.

 

 

Been using duckduckgo for about 5 years now, google does deeper searches and awesome snapshot archiving, so it's way better for cyberstalking your old asshole math teacher or whatnot.  But for 99.99% of searches duckduckgo produces the same results and they don't spy on you.  The used to purge their logs daily, not sure if this is still their practice or not..

I often wonder if we're in the golden age of, say 'digitisation' for lack of a better term.  There are a couple of angles to this.  But it's never been more difficult to get away from the panopticon-like (or 'eye of sauron' if you're more geeky (as an aside, it's interesting that Tolkein sort of alluded to the idea of Panipticon before Foucault popularized Bentham's term)) pervasive surveillance society.  But on the other hand, the sorts of information it generates tends to be deeply suspect.  Both from the perspective of whether its tampered with, but also from the perspective of the fact that this surveillance apparatus actually /believes/ everything that's fed to it. 

You can apply for a car loan with the name Muhammed Porkchop, and somewhere in some database is locked in the existence of this fictitious person forever.  And the more you do with this name, the more it builds up a person: Muhammed Porkchop - where he eats, what he likes, his favorite cat video, etc.  Muhammed Porkchop becomes indistinguishible from a real person in the digital realm. 

It's all rather strange.  And would be comical, except for the fact that people believe at face value this to all be true.  In the same way that people believe in laws or gods.  And this becomes really inconvenient when one's trying to contradict what this weird cloud has come to accept as true.  It also would be comical if Wall Street hadn't gotten involved and supported obviously falsifiable frauds in order to support their weird quasi-commerce surrounding it. 

One of my theories on why Facebook, for example, became the dominant social networking site (instead of any of the myriad other emergent competitors at the time) was because 'Zuck' is a tool and was always willing to play ball with Wall Street - this is apparent from the earliest iteration of FB at Harvard when it was called "the face book" and his comment: "they trust me, dumb fucks."  If you listen to any presentation or interview he gives, what always astounds me is that he really never has anything to say at all.  Nothing insightful whatsoever - let alone something one would expect from the tech visionary he's purported to be.  There are other reasons too, of course, but I think that this was a critical ingredient.

And another example of the deep fraud of the Wall Street Silicon Valley nexus (to say nothing of governments intermingled in there too) as it pertains to facebook:

Notice the date of that video - it's not like this is new information.  So it's not about a legit commerce, rather it's about a nexus of fraud and monetary skimming around something presented by all connected parties as legitimate.  These stories keep coming out, and they're presented like it's a just discovered thing: http://createsend.com/t/d-C9E20F13D84C1EB1 Facebook claims more users than even exist. 

And, not to pick on FB specificially, because it's not like it's specific to FB:

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-09-11/startling-anecdote-about-online-advertising-restoration-hardware

https://wolfstreet.com/2017/07/28/procter-gamble-slashed-digital-ad-spending-what-happened-next/

On a human level, I'm not sure how it all washes out in the end, but the world we've made for ourselves is certainly deeply dystopian on the digital front (and in real life too).  Back in the day people couldn't escape their past until national credit organizations became a mainstay of society allowing someone to pick up, move to a new place, and start over.  This is sort of the way that modern-mobile western society has operated, certainly for our lifetimes, it's an interesting question whether the pervasive digitized profile created for every person (as well as for persons who aren't real) has taken this away (ie, it's no longer possible to escape one's past - whether true or not). 

What does seem clear is that at some point internet and mobile phones end up not being worth the bother (cost) at all.  Just like TV became not worth the bother 20+ years ago and people are just now figuring it out and cutting the cords for good..

Interesting thread, makes me hate everyone..  ;\

on Sep 13, 2017

tid242

One of my theories on why Facebook, for example, became the dominant social networking site (instead of any of the myriad other emergent competitors at the time) was because 'Zuck' is a tool and was always willing to play ball with Wall Street - this is apparent from the earliest iteration of FB at Harvard when it was called "the face book" and his comment: "they trust me, dumb fucks."

I don't like or trust Facebook, either.  Went there once and once only.  I regretted the decision that very day, with hundreds of emails arriving from Facebook to ask if I knew this or that person.  It took a couple of months to end the harassment, with Facebook following/tracking me across three completely unrelated email addresses to continue pumping out unwanted/unsolicited emails... all of it containing advertising... read SPAM!!!!

Never again!!!  Wouldn't go there again if they paid me.

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