Block Spam Calls with Help from your Carrier

We’ve all been getting too many spam, scam and telemarketing calls. Many times these illegal robocalls spoof Caller ID, making it appear that they are calling from your local area, or even from your own number. Fortunately help is on the way.

AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon all have anti-spoofing features which you can use for free:

Read more about phone spam and STIR/SHAKEN in this article at Consumer Reports.

Meanwhile, don’t disclose personal information to a caller, no matter who they say they are or what number they call from. Also, anytime a caller suggests you pay with a gift card, it is almost certainly a scam. There is no legitimate reason to do that.

 

Unsolicited Testimonials

Here are some of the unsolicited rave reviews the MacMAD blog has received just in the last few days.

Thank you for publishing this awesome article.
Iím a long time reader but Iíve never been compelled to
leave a comment. I subscribed to your blog and shared this on my Facebook.
Thanks again for this great post!

Excellent weblog right here! Also your website quite a bit up
fast! What host are you using? Can I am getting your associate link on your
host? I desire my website loaded up as quickly as yours
lol

I couldnít resist commenting. Well written!

Fabulous piece of writing! Genuinely savored often the examining. I hope to study significantly more away from you. In my opinion you may have amazing information and even imaginative and prescient vision. Iím greatly fascinated this particular answers.

Thanks for posting this awesome article. Iím a long time reader but Iíve never been compelled to
leave a comment. I subscribed to your blog and shared this on my
Twitter. Thanks again for a great article!

You may notice a pattern here. The authors are apparently not all fluent English speakers. Also, the comments are all perfectly generic. They don’t mention the content of the articles at all and may seem weirdly inappropriate to the content.† (The “prescient vision” comment was on the rather mundane article How to Turn on an iMac.) Some of the comments use language almost identical to other comments. And, of course, they are all highly complimentary.

These are all examples of blog spam filtered out by Akismet recently. The senders hope that bloggers will be flattered and allow these comments on their site. The usernames or homepage links invariably refer to some shady source of Viagra, cheap watches, etc.

I really don’t know why the spammers bother. I would think that surely, all WordPress sites have installed Akismet by now. If you didn’t filter this stuff out, your blog would turn into a gigantic spammy link farm within days.

 

Fight Calendar Spam

Recently, I have been receiving mysterious spam calendar invitations like the one below. You may have received them also.

fullsizeoutput_6b35I never saw a corresponding email. Even worse, the only options are accept or decline. Either one sends a message back to the spammer, confirming my email address! This junk is coming through your iCloud account. Here are instructions for preventing this type of spam from The Dangling Pointer blog. †

Since this is associated with your iCloud calendar, it affects both iOS and Macintosh.

They probably didn’t get your email address from anywhere. It appears they are trying big lists of likely email addresses @icloud.com.