Who was hacked?
November 23, 2012 12:47 PM   Subscribe

My dad got a spam email with my (unusual) full name listed as the sender, but from a random email address with no association to my name. Was his contact list compromised or was mine?

The email address it was sent from has no relation to any of mine and doesn't use any part of my name. Just in case, I checked my sent mail and nothing was sent from my account.

His email account was hacked a few months ago and used to send spam to his contacts, but he has since changed his password and has had no other problems.
posted by amarynth to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
It could have been anyone that might have both of you in their contact list or email history. It's damn near impossible to tell who, and this situation is common enough that it might not have been him despite his email compromise from a few months ago.
posted by deadmessenger at 12:53 PM on November 23, 2012

Are you both on facebook? There's some weird facebook bug going out now where if you click on a picture, or click on a link someone "sends" you on facebook, it'll randomly start sending out facebook messages "from" you to other people on your facebook list.

Also, what Deadmessenger says is true - it could be "from" anyone, but the email just grabbed his name when it hit your inbox and said "yeah, this is from your dad too."
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:54 PM on November 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

posted by Sidhedevil at 1:18 PM on November 23, 2012

Response by poster: Thanks! The Facebook suggestions led me here and here. If I'm understanding it correctly, just the info that he has as public on Facebook was used, and nothing was actually hacked. I'll go over his privacy settings with him.
posted by amarynth at 1:48 PM on November 23, 2012

The other possibility is that it's a generic Joe Job and your addresses were both harvested at the same time or from the same source. I've got a very unusual last name (and used to work for Pfizer) and once got spam, from me, trying to interest me in faux Viagra.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 5:10 PM on November 23, 2012

Yes, this sounds like the Facebook thing. I've gotten these with the names of several friends and relatives, in waves, all connected time by Facebook.
posted by alms at 5:48 PM on November 23, 2012

This happened to me. It turned out to have no bad consequences. Phew!
posted by latkes at 8:53 PM on November 23, 2012

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