Remember those old Bugs Bunny cartoons when Bugs does something gullible and stupid and he turns into a fat, blinking lollipop?
Picture Bugs. Now picture me. Bugs. Me. Bugs. Me.
Yeah, I’m a sucker.
I really didn’t mean to be, but darn it, I’m so naive. I can’t help it. I’m a new writer and new writers love a little pat on the head and some kind words about their babies. We do. We really do. That’s why we haunt places like Goodreads or Amazon reviews, looking for those little pats that say, “Good job, brilliant author. I will now buy your backlist.”
But beware, author. There are some not so nice people out there and they will use that elusive pat on the head to get something other than a smile from you. Yeah, they want your email address so they can mine for other people’s email addresses. And this is why I am now a blinking sucker.
It all began so innocently. I sat down that evening to check my email, and what do I have in my inbox but an email from my website. Oh, wow! Some Russian woman thinks A Little Texas is all that and a bag of borsch. She loves my writing and is using it to help her learn how to speak English. She is trying so hard because she so wants to come to my country one day. Oh, and she is so moved by my writing, by my characters. All she wants is an autograph. Won’t I please bless her and send her an autograph. Awwww….ain’t that sweet? Well, yeah. But, here’s the deal. She didn’t care about my autograph. She wanted me to respond which I did, thus the blinking lollipop.
Three weeks later, my email is hacked.
They mined all the emails from all my yahoo groups. Yikes. Think about the sheer number of folks on all those loops….um, thousands. And these hackers get paid for each viable email so they copied all of them. In fact, most of my ENALR buds probably recieved some helpful spam that morning. It was horrible. I tried to change my password, but the hacker had control of my email via my computer and kept changing it to whatever password he wanted to use. So, I had to copy all my files, back up all my data, and reboot my computer. Except I didn’t have all the recovery disks. Had to wait on those. And now finally almost a week and a half later, my desk top is back functioning correctly and that hacker is in hell (okay, wishful thinking, but you feel me, right?)
So there you have it – Liz Talley is a sucker, a big blinking lollipop!
Learn from her.
So what about you? Ever been hacked? Ever felt like a blooming idiot? Please share your tales of woe and make me feel better!