I’ve had the misfortune to watch Watchdog tonight. Are there really people that damned stupid? No! Really?
There were the people that spent three hundred quid on breast enlargment pills that amazingly enough, don’t work.
But the best one for me is this:

[Quote from, my smartass comments in italics]
Watchdog has received over a hundred emails from viewers who had been billed for telephone calls they hadn’t made, all together they’ve lost nearly 14,000.

Actually, I think you’ll find they *have* made the calls. OK, they didn’t know about it, but they made them alright. What’s more, it probably cost then 15 quid to send the email 😉

When you log onto the internet your computer makes a phone call to your ISP (internet service provider). Yet these viewers found their computer had hung up on their existing ISP to call a premium rate phone line that could cost over 1.50 a minute.

There are two ways in which this happens. Firstly viewers stumbled into a website
looking for p0rn
which had a pop-up box that would not go away unless they clicked “yes” or “OK”.
or ‘No’ if they tried it enough.
When they clicked on the box the computer downloaded a program which hijacked their Internet connection and dialled a premium rate number.
which they agreed to
Secondly, viewers went to a website
looking for p0rn
which secretly downloaded and installed a program directly onto their computer. From this point on, every time they went online their computer dialled a premium rate number. ”
[End of quote]

These people basically got conned by an evil p0rn dialler, and now want BT/Telewest/Whoever to pay for it because they’re too bloody stupid to close a few windows, or even perhaps shut down their stupid windows PC.
Don’t get me wrong, the p0rn dialler is an evil thing. But it does go to show that MS Windows is not a good thing mixed with stupid people looking for p0rn (or something else) for free. Does it not occur to people that there might be a scam going on?

PEBCAK.what does this mean?

If anyone reading this is thinking ‘How do I know what I should/shouldn’t do when I’m looking for p0rn surfing the web?” then it’s simple:

1. Junk MS Windows. It’s not safe in your hands if you had to ask the question. Buy a nice Mac instead*. Better still, read a nice newspaper instead. One of those with lots of Franklin Mint adverts.
2. If a popup box pops up, and you are in any doubt, SAY NO. Hell, reboot the machine if you need to. You could always try reading the text, instead of just clicking ‘Yes, I’d like to be royally shafted’.
3. If you ignored the above, disconnect the phone line and get someone to check your PC. By the way, would you like to buy breast enlargement pills?
4. You have got a virus scanner, haven’t you? And a spyware detector?

*Andy M is going to have a field day. I’ve just reccomended a Mac. He will take the piss forever. Next I’ll be unable to use a command line.

2 Responses to “Stupidity”

  1. SublimeProduct Says:


  2. Andy M Says:

    Did I mention the spare antique 486’s? Probably not as I am typing this after some beer and whiskey and things never make muck sense after that….

    Anyway, I also have, courtesy of the cousin, some antique Macintoshes as well. Only $400 ands running system 7.6.1.

    If you want to talk real OS, talk to me. Macintosh: Computers for the rest of us! No Bull!