We recently received a bunch of emails like the following:
From: Mail Delivery System <MAILER-DAEMON@guardedhost.com> Sent: Thursday, March 4, 2021, 7:55 PM Subject: Undelivered Mail Returned to Sender. This is an automated message from the mail system. I’m sorry to have to inform you that your message could not be delivered to one or more recipients. It’s attached below. The reason for delivery failure is included in the message below. <firstname.lastname@example.org>: host mx-ha02.web.de[188.8.131.52] said: 550 Requested action not taken: mailbox unavailable (in reply to RCPT TO command)
Apparently, guardedhost.com is owned by crooks who send these emails to millions of people, and probably 1-2% of the people click on the attachment. It is not clear what the benefit is to the guardedhost.com people, but they may collect statistics on people who are not savvy and then scam them seriously later.
“The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away” applies to most or all recent technological advances. In particular, electronic mail (“Email”) is much faster and easier than paper-based mail (“Snailmail”). But it can also be used by crooks to defraud the public. And it appears that the crooks are getting more numerous and their techniques are getting better. Our three websites (TechnologyBloopers.com, WhyMenDieYoung.com, and Wilddancer.com) have identical code intended for letting visitors add comments but preventing robots from commenting. However, the crooks are getting smarter, so they are sidestepping our barriers and we are experiencing noticeable growths in the numbers of phishing attempts and nonsense comments. And in keeping with recent trends, we are getting a lot more from Russian sources!
Well, Google sure isn’t making it easy for individuals, thanks to the messy combinations of accounts, email addresses, channels, and browsers that makes it a nightmare to find videos once you have more than one of each of these four entities. And to make matters worse, Google threw its failing Google+ social network into the brew. Using Chrome we find three channels (or are these accounts?)—Wilddancer, Beekeeping (thus far empty as we try to sort out the whole mess), and Bill Coggshall—associated with one email address, and two channels—Car Tunes by Coggshall (which started out as “Car Tunes” that YouTube allowed me to reserve then reneged and forced me to add “by Coggshall”) and email@example.com (strange-looking channel, no?)– associated with a different email address (firstname.lastname@example.org). Using Firefox we find two channels (or accounts?)—Car Tunes by Coggshall and email@example.com—associated with email address firstname.lastname@example.org.