The Second Coming on my homepage??
November 28, 2010 7:35 AM   Subscribe

I turned on my computer this morning, opened my browser and was astounded to see that my iGoogle page is suddenly full of Christian widgets, from "Daily Prayer to Jesus" to "Book of Mormon - One Chapter a Day." I'm most definitely not a Christian.

I'm kind of stunned. Even the theme has been changed to a Jesus theme. My old widgets are still there, just down at the bottom of the page.

The first thing I did was change my Google password, of course, but what I'd like to know is, has my account been hacked? Are there people out there breaking into other people's Google accounts and just putting Christian imagery on people's iGoogle pages? Has this ever happened to you? Additionally, password aside, is there something else I should be doing?

I'm on a MacBook Pro, running OS X 10.5.8, although I also access my Google account on my iPhone and iPad.
posted by Bromius to Computers & Internet (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Has a friend recently used your computer? Sounds like you got pranked.
posted by oinopaponton at 7:40 AM on November 28, 2010 [5 favorites]

...Whoa. This hack would scare the bejeezus out of me (pun intended?), and my gmail account has been hacked before. My account was hacked to send a malicious link to everyone in my contact list. Changing my password was enough for me, as far as I know. That is, I haven't had any other problems.

Upon preview, yeah, a prank seems more likely. No idea why someone would hack you in this way. It seems too personal.
posted by two lights above the sea at 7:43 AM on November 28, 2010

Seconding the notion that you've been pranked. Could a friend have figured out your password? Since it's your iGoogle page they wouldn't even have needed access to your computer, I should think.
posted by bardophile at 7:45 AM on November 28, 2010

Best answer: This link tells you how to look at Recent Activity on your account. Should tell you the IP address that someone used to log in to your account.
posted by bardophile at 7:48 AM on November 28, 2010 [1 favorite]

Or maybe you logged onto iGoogle at work (like I do) or at a friend's house and never logged off. I wouldn't put it past one of my coworkers to do something like that without really realizing they were messing with someone's personal account. Otherwise, yeah, prank.
posted by two lights above the sea at 8:02 AM on November 28, 2010

Did you use public wireless recently? Sounds like a firesheep prank.
posted by aberrant at 8:02 AM on November 28, 2010

Or did you have relatives visit? Someone who used your computer, was not smart enough to realize that your login is different from theirs, and decided to "restore" the settings that they thought someone had changed on them?
posted by yclipse at 8:24 AM on November 28, 2010

It was just USA Thanksgiving. Did you get together with your family? Either someone in your family seriously wishes you'd get "saved" or else someone in your family is pretty funny. (Or, I suppose, both.)
posted by secretseasons at 8:31 AM on November 28, 2010

Response by poster: I did just take my computer home with me for Thanksgiving, and left it open for long periods of time, but my parents are definitely not so tech savvy (or pranky) to have changed anything.

Using the link bardophile so graciously supplied, I see that 2 unknown IPs, one in Georgia and one in Florida, accessed my account via IMAP within the last 24 hours, but would they have been able to change anything on my iGoogle page via IMAP?

Since I've been traveling, I guess it's possible that my phone connected to some WiFi I was passing by, perhaps at the airport. I don't go for the Free Public Wifi stuff, but I think I have a few friends who never changed their network name from the default "at&t," so my phone might have connected to one of those.

I'll just chalk it up to a fluke, I guess, and go back to my previous Madalyn Murray O'Hair theme.
posted by Bromius at 8:34 AM on November 28, 2010 [1 favorite]

Chalk it up to a fluke, but change your pasword and check in your gmail settings that you are not set to forward emails somewhere funky.
posted by AugustWest at 8:38 AM on November 28, 2010

Response by poster: Yeah, done and done. I also checked and my sent mail folder doesn't have anything unexpected in it. I've asked around among some friends if anyone got any weird mail from me, and so far I've only heard back in the negative.
posted by Bromius at 8:41 AM on November 28, 2010

Be careful with unsecured wifi spots and browsing. Hijacking people's web sessions over unsecured wifi has become incredibly easy in recent months.
posted by swngnmonk at 8:48 AM on November 28, 2010 [1 favorite]

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