How do I eliminate the virus/spam/junk mail that persists beyond all attempts to stop it?

Xoandre June 3, 2011
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The screenshot at the URL below is of one of countless emails I have been receiving to my email address regardless of what I do…

http://img708.imageshack.us/img708/3618/junkw.jpg

I have run virus scans, I have run malware scans, I have set up email filters, and have even uninstalled Windows Live Email and installed in its place Mozilla Thunderbird in hopes to eliminate these incessant email spams.

Every week, at least once a week, it seems as if my email account at Live.com (Microsoft Hotmail) sends out of its own volition the spam email to all of my contacts. Of course, I receive many Delivery Failure Notices in response, but now my own family members emails are receiving these spam mails allegedly from me.

How do I stop this from continuing to happen?

I have forwarded all of these emails to abuse@hotmail.com, but it continues to happen and I have no idea how to stop it!

Can anyone out there help???

 

 

  1. Bob The Builder
    August 30, 2011 at 5:06 am

    This happened to me not 24 hours after I downloaded and installed Thunderbird and setup a collection of gMail accounts.  I firmly believe that my account was not actually compromised, but that somehow my contacts were harvested when Thunderbird downloaded all the old messages from my account during setup.  I got a collection of bounced emails supposedly sent from me, but none of them exist in my sent folder.  I believe they are just spoofing my account and sending them from an anonymous server and not my actual Hotmail account.

    Opinions?

  2. Christopher Royall
    June 20, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Xoandre,

    There are somethings you should check first. 

    First:  Check your sent folder from the Windows Live Account, Outlook or other email software packages you may use to send or receive email through this account, and if you use your phone to check emails, you will also need to check that as well.  If any of these show that email has been sent in what sounds like bulk amounts, then the emails are definitely being sent through your account.  Second:  Run a full virus scan on all computers that you have checked your email on.  Also, you should run Malwarebytes, or similar, with a full scan.

    Now, if you do find that you have emails being sent using your account, the solutions will vary on which avenue it is being sent.  If it is being sent from your phone, then your are going to need to change the security on the phone, and as all phones differ, as well as providors, you will need to check with the place you got the phone, or documentation on the best procedure for doing this, or even try Google for the model.  If you find that it is being sent from your Outlook, Eudora, or other Email program, reset your computer passwords, remove the account from that package, and then redo the account with a different name for the account.  Finally, if you find that it is being sent from the Web portion, and you have changed your password, then you most likely will need to disable that account and get another one.

    The one thing that you stated that alerts me to the fact that this is not someone just using your email address as a sender id is the fact that it is being sent to the people you know, such as your family, which means that your contact information has most likely been obtained.  Unfortunately, if they have just obtained a of your contacts, they can still continue to send them spam, but if you deactivate that account, and send your contacts the information that the account is deactivated, then they can place that account as a block, to stop the spams from coming in.  The main ways that people (hackers) get access to this information is through key loggers (software that actually logs your keystrokes in a computer or device, and then sends the files over an internet connection), that are disguised in software such as games, hijacked software, freebie screensavers, and the like, which is why it is very important that you run the full scans on all machines that you use.  The only other way that this might still occur is if you are giving someone else, that you might be fully trusting in your passwords.

    While none of this information will erase any damage that has already been done, hopefully it will help to stop any further damages from occurring that are much worse than spam.

  3. Shamrocksu88
    June 9, 2011 at 11:56 am

    Block the domain from which you are getting SPAM mails.

    HOW-TO : http://email.about.com/cs/hotmailtips/qt/et042402.htm

  4. Mark
    June 3, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    Have you tried boxbee.com?

    • Xoandre Moats
      June 4, 2011 at 7:24 am

      boxbee.com is an empty URL domain for sale at GoDaddy....

      • Realdeal
        June 7, 2011 at 4:28 pm

         Boxbe is good,works a lot better than my normal hotmail. I had the same issues as you, and i added filters too.Spammers still got those pesky mailing through.
        The above poster got it wrong with the address.

  5. Mike
    June 3, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    Those emails don't necessarily mean that someone or something was using your email account to send emails.

    Someone could simply use a random open relay or self-setup SMTP server and set your email-address as sender id. While the messages sent are probably sorted or marked as SPAM for the recipient any error notification or mail delivery message will be returned to the sender id ~ in this case your Email-Address.

    Another example are a lot of service providers or business SMTPs which do not restrict the sender id for the local network. For example whenever I'm at home [and therefor on my ISPs network] I could use their SMTP to send emails from support@makeuseof.com and any answer or mail delivery notification would go to some poor soul here on MUO :-)

  6. Gkaepp
    June 3, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    Aside from password change. Set up rules only allowing friends and business dealings with all else going to the dumpster.

    • Xoandre Moats
      June 4, 2011 at 7:22 am

      I have no idea how to set up said rules using either hotmail online or Thunderbird on my PC - or even Windows Live Mail.

  7. James Bruce
    June 3, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    This might sound stupid, but have tried changing your password? It's likely your account details have been obtained somewhere, rather than being on your computer. Changing your pasword would stop anything thats happening remotely from getting in. 

    • Xoandre Moats
      June 4, 2011 at 7:23 am

      I have changed my Password. I'm sorry I forgot to add that to my initial problem/question. Regardless of how many times I change my password, these mails still persist.

    • Tina
      June 4, 2011 at 5:02 pm

      Congrats! ;)

  8. Tina
    June 3, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    Xoandre,

    did you change your email password?

    • James Bruce
      June 3, 2011 at 3:58 pm

      i sooooo beat you to that

    • Xoandre Moats
      June 4, 2011 at 7:23 am

      yes. See James Bruce's comment and my reply.

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