We have gotten a lot of e-mails today asking if AWeber’s new confirmation is a scam. While there is no way to know for sure, it is pretty safe to assume that the answer is yes. Why? Because just about everyone who tried it already responded and un-nammed it. That means the answer is most likely “yes”, and “no” is the exception rather than the rule. In fact, AWeber is so confident that their confirmation is not a scam that they are offering a full money-back guarantee if you open up a support account and try out the service. How can they be so sure? Because AWeber has collected data on more than 40 million spam e-mails over the past year, which they use to train their models and create content that is completely automated and personalized for each individual sign up. They call this tactic “behavioral marketing”, and it is one of the many reasons why they are the experts in email marketing software and tools.
Why Is Confirmation A Scam?
When you sign up for a new account with AWeber, you will receive an e-mail with a confirmation link. Once you click that link, you will be re-directed to a page that looks like this:
And yes, that is a distorted image of a dog with a bone, which just so happens to be the official mascot for the website bonegiesscams.com. For some reason, that particular site has a thing against canines…
See what happened? You clicked the confirmation link, which took you to a place that looks like a dog’s dinner plate. Then, the spammer won again! They successfully tricked you into visiting a crappy dog food website that they can use to infect your computer with malware and potentially ruin your whole day. This is why, in a nutshell, confirmation scams exist. They are a way for spammers to make money by tricking people into following a link or openning an attachment that contains malware. Some of the more recent variants of this scam even embed a cryptocurrency miner in the URL so that you consume free electricity as you visit the scammy site. Inevitably, when you become aware that you are a victim of a confirmation scam, you will feel a little bit of anxiety and annoyance as you try to figure out what happened. This is why it is such a pain to get tricked by these emails—you already felt anxious and irritated enough as you went through the drudgery of opening the email, reading its contents, and acting on the supposed request. So, when the anxiety and irritation returns, you will question whether or not you should have trusted the email in the first place. This is why you should never, ever trust an email that threatens physical harm or contains links or attachments that you have never seen before. Even if the email seems to come from a “trusted” source, it could be a scam designed to steal personal information, trick you into visiting a dangerous website, or install malware on your computer.
Are Spam E-mails Getting More Sophisticated?
Spam emails have always been a pain in the ass for internet users. It’s not just that they are usually incredibly annoying as you try to get through your inbox or that they can often be really dangerous if you click on a link or open an attachment from an unknown sender. It’s also that they are usually incredibly easy to spoof, so it is nearly impossible to know whether or not you are actually being tricked by a spammer.
The good news is that over the past year or so, spam has gotten a whole lot more sophisticated, which means it is becoming increasingly difficult to trick people. Why? Because spammers have to constantly alter their tactics to stay one step ahead of anti-spam technologies and digital signal processing (DSP) algorithms that try to identify and block suspicious activity. They have to change the type of spam they send to avoid getting flagged as potential phishing scams, they have to find new ‘fronts’ for their scams to avoid being blocked by security software, and they have to find new ways to make money to stay alive. These are all incredibly time-consuming tasks that require a great deal of effort.
As a result, it is becoming increasingly difficult for spammers to pull off successful scams. For instance, just last year, a scam that was designed to look like it came from the IRS went viral, with people falling for it every single time. So, the IRS sent out a tweet explaining that it was a scam and that people should not open any attached or forwarded emails from them. The tweet even included a link to a page with more information about the scam. At the time, this particular scam was one of the most successful of 2018, with people falling victim to it almost every day and losing thousands of dollars as a result. However, the fact that the scam was so easy to recognize and block likely had something to do with its success. The IRS was able to shut it down rather quickly and prevent people from losing any money as a result of the scam. This is likely because people have wised up to the fact that the IRS never, ever asks you to wire them money or sends emails looking like this:
Click on the link in the email to see what happens when you click on it…
…but it’s still somewhat prevalent in the world of spam simply because it is such an easy way to make money. In most cases, just like the dog food scam discussed earlier, all a scammer has to do is convince you to visit a shady site or download an attachment that contains malware. The more sophisticated the spam gets, the greater the potential for damage. So, although it is still highly prevalent, it is certainly a pain in the ass for internet users who have to wade through it day in and day out. It’s also one of the major reasons that spam emails are a major security risk. The more sophisticated it gets, the more opportunities there are for it to contain malware or trick you into doing something dangerous. So, although it is still mostly spam, the better your computer security software and the more you stick to well-known and trusted sources, the safer you will be from online threats.
Has Spam’s Prevalence Reduced?
It’s hard to say for sure if spam’s prevalence has reduced, but it has certainly become a lot less common. This is mainly because of two things. First, it is now illegal to send spam in many countries. So, for a spammer to make money, they have to find new ways to trick people. One of the simplest ways is to simply change the way they send the spam. In some cases, they will send it as an attachment rather than via a link in the email. In others, they will use steganography to hide the text in an image or video. Even if a spammer’s success relies on getting people to open the email and click on a link or attachment, at least now they have to consider the possibility that the person they are trying to trick may be smart enough to realize what is going on and report them to the authorities. So, although it is still quite prevalent, it certainly is a lot less common than it used to be—at least in theory, anyway.
What Is The Average Cost Of A Spam Prevention Plan?
If you want to keep your inbox clean of spam, you have a couple of options. You can hire a team of anti-spam experts to monitor your email accounts and hunt down spammer ‘fronts’ and ‘domains’ that they may use, or you can invest in spam filtering software from big tech companies like Google or Apple. The good news is that you can get a decent spam prevention plan for free from a reliable source like Google or Apple.
In most cases, these companies will give you some free spam filtering software, along with some tips on how to use it effectively. For instance, Google will give you about a year of free access to their “Spam School”, which is an anti-spam learning platform that they use to train their anti-spam technology. With Apple, you get a similar learning tool as well as a year of free access to their “Spamfighter” anti-spam filter. Other than that, you typically have to pay for server space and bandwidth in order to make sure that your email stays spam-free. So, in most cases, it is quite practical and affordable to keep your inbox free of spam.