2016-08-02

Fedora PSA: How to know you are seeing a SPAM web page.

So one of the things that I really really hated about the current crop of SPAM on Fedora was that it completely lacked any originality or usefulness. The pages were usually hundreds of repeating lines saying something like:

customer support
technical support 
customer service
1-8[0-9][0-9]-xxx-xxxx 

over and over again seems to be a useless waste of electrons for anyone landing on the page. Especially when the web page says something like

c*u*s*t*o*m*e*r s*e*r*v*i*c*e

or some similar text. My first guess was that these are either used as landing text pages for some sort of malware to pop up some sub-section of the webpage as a problem alert. You have a problem with your . However that made less and less sense in that the pages did not seem to have any encoding for the malware to say 'this is the string to use today'. It also didn't make sense in that it was clear that this was being inserted many times by a cut and paste versus program insertion (someone would double paste the text into a web page but with the text intermingled). 

My next guess was that it was probably related to SEO ratings for some other search engines. Sure enough there was a pattern of various search engines that seemed to be triggered shortly after a set of webpages were created. They would specifically add the various pages and shortly afterwords a search at the search engine for " help" would show up the usual one word line like:

Call Support 

at the top of the search list linked to our website. Most of the searches that I found through the webpage logs were either for google.com or redirects from bit.do websites (actually the only bit.do redirects for over a month were for these pages.)

In any case, back to the subject title. If you are seeing a large page of text with various small variations on 'search terms' to get you technical support for product.. and a phone number DO NOT CALL IT. Especially if the page you are looking at is NOT for the product you are looking for.

Repeat after me:

  • For actual QuickBooks support go to https://quickbooks.com
  • For actual Cisco support go to https://cisco.com
  • For actual Microsoft product support go to https://microsoft.com
If you are ending on some other website, it is most likely some sort of scam.

Thank you
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