Tuesday, March 10, 2009

ENTRECARD, HACKED??

4days ago, I posted " GUESS WHO I SAW IN MY ENTRECARD DROP INBOX - TED MURPHY OF IZEA!"  
after  I noticed 2 CPC ads from Social Sparks, a paid to blog network under Izea owned by Ted Murphy, appearing in my EC card drop inbox, disguising as EC member complete with badges and pretending to be  EC droppers. Today, there are three! 

For the benefit of non Entrecard members, Entrecard is a  network  of bloggers where members visit each
Entrecard: Most PopularImage by truebluetitan via Flickr
others' blogs to drop their EC cards, an efficient and effective way to drive traffic to EC carders' sites, especially for upstart bloggers like me. With ab"U Drop, I follow" practice being followed by most EC carders, the innocent EC members will normally check their drop inboxes to see who paid them a visit and reciprocate these with their own visits and card drops.A drop inbox contains the badges of EC members who made the drops. With CPC (Cost per Click) ads inconspicously appearing together with the badges of other EC droppers, the reciprocating EC member will unknowingly click on the badges-cum-cpc ads. And, each innocent click sends revenue to the spammer! Revolting, indeed!


Ted's Izea has a very strict policy against spamming ad clicks on their network's cpc ads and he promised me through an email he sent immediately after my earlier post that he will look for the culprit and ban the culprit forever from his networks. I also sent a notice to Entrecard about the whole incident (which unfortunately they merely tagged with "moderate" importance). I even included the entrecard member id numbers appearing on the spammed badges.  But, alas, I still have to hear from Entrecard regarding the matter prompting me to make this post. 

Below are the screenshots of the badges of the spammers and the corresponding ads that they link to.


 
This is my drops inbox for March 3, 2009 that contains ---

Manta Mania and beautiful underwater bubble. 
Clicking these badges will lead you to the corresponding Social Sparks CPC ads below- -
 
  
Please note that a click on the badges will earn the spammer  $0.11 for the manta mania link 
and $0.16 for the dolphin bubbles link. 
If these badges appear in every EC card dropper's inbox, you can just
imagine how much revenue is being funneled 
into the spammer's account every day 
by innocent EC carders.

Now, this is my March 7, 2009 drop inbox which contains the latest spam--

This badge, if clicked will link you to another Social Sparks CPC ad below

Which will send $0.27 per click to the spammer'saccount. 
Totally abhoring!
I would not have ordinarily noticed these spams. But when I started looking for the EC carddrop boxes in the linked sites, they were not present, indicating that the site owners are not Entrecard members. (Can you imagine Ted Murphy being a member of EC? See my earlier post " GUESS WHO I SAW IN MY ENTRECARD DROP INBOX - TED MURPHY OF IZEA!"- it was titled as such merely to draw attention to the issue!)
Another funny thing I noted about the whole incident is the fact that these badges appeared in my inbox days after I've scanned my inbox. I mean, when I scanned through my inbox on March 3, the manta mania and the dolphin bubbles badges were still not there. When I scorred through my inboxes again on March 4, the badges were already lined up along with the other EC droppers forMarch 3. This has kept me wondering up to this time. 
I have also been wondering how the spammer did the whole thing- how he hacked the Entrecard network. All the while I thought he/she must have been an extra ordinary hacker...well at least until a fellow blogger from my BlogCatalog community provided mewith a link that led me to a video tutorial from Traffic Geyser which instructs you how to easily earn money with pay per click ads. The video is entitled Social Media Money Magnets - How to Make Money Fast as an Affiliate Using Video.
Whoever did the Entrecard spam must have seen this videoand adopted the method to create the spam.
This is a call toall entrecard members. If you see the entrecard badges above in your drop inbox, do not click on them. Deny the spammer the chance to earn free money at our expense! Be vigilant and report similar incidents to Entrecard. If you have encountered similar attempts tospam entrecard users, do drop me a line. I will document similar incidents and post it here so others may not fall into the same trap. Cheers!
 
(Picture courtesy of  http://makeapound.blogspot.com/)
 



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9 comments:

  1. Totally agree, also there a a few blogs out there redirecting to non-blogs. One was a Jokeroo page, another was a sea life centre, sites with no blog and no widget I have complained to Entrecard but as usual they take ages to do nothing lol.

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  2. Thank you so much for this post - it has been driving me crazy running into these type of redirect sites! Now I understand what's happening. I really appreciate the time it took you to research this and post about it.

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  3. hi,

    I have deleted all of the blogs in question...thanks for pointing this stuff out to us here at EC...if you see anymore don't hesistate to let us know.


    Thanks

    Matt
    EC Support Manager

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  4. Oddly bewildering, I can almost see the complexities of blogging making it eveolve into something quite seperate from the rest of web 2.0 (sic).
    Andrew Culture

    (my siggy)
    Badges are my thing...
    Photos are also my thing...
    My good living/ eating blog...
    Writing random stuff is also my thing...

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  5. Cheers for the heads up, I will be on the lookout. I was not aware of this spammage...

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  6. Thank you so much for the heads up. I didn't have any idea that people were using this site to do such. I am also thankful that I have not dropped on any of these sites and they haven't dropped on me either. I will keep my eyes open to the kind of activity and try to help you uncover the culprits. Have a great day!

    Friends 4 Life!
    Eddie Garcia
    eddiegarcia08@gmail.com

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  7. It pays to read co-EC's posts and not just clicking on "drop" and leave as you get helpful info like this.

    Thanks mate. Cheers!

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  8. izea should also know about this and ban the user and its earnings.

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