Did you get a “…Infringing on copyrighted images…” email notice?
By Brett Lloyd Abbott, Pool Builder Marketing LLC
Here’s how the email usually starts:
Hello! My name is [someone you’ve never heard of].
Your website or a website that your organization hosts is infringing on a copyrighted images owned by myself. [Bad grammar is a clue.]
Check out this document with the hyperlinks to my images you used at [a link to YOUR website] and my earlier publications to get the evidence of my copyrights.
Download it now and check this out for yourself: [a curiously long and strange hyperlink].
We see dozens notices of these every week, across many different websites.
Whatever you do, don’t click the link!
Let me assure you right now, this has NOTHING to do with image copyrights, and EVERYTHING to do with installing a nasty and malicious virus on your computer that will allow the bad guys to (1) take over and disrupt your system, and then (2) hold your company for ransom to fix it.
This scam has been going on for more than a year, but it’s gotten significantly more sophisticated. And worse, this backdoor-virus is getting increasingly difficult for anti-malware systems to detect.
Clever, I must admit. It all looks and sounds so official. Most business owners will panic when they first see these notices, and are tempted to click the link.
Fortunately, my clients are pretty smart, and they usually call me first.
So just consider this a public service warning for all other pool companies and business owners who would not have thought to call me first:
- These are a SCAM.
- You are NOT in trouble.
- UNLESS you click the link!