evannichols (evannichols) wrote,

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You Want Me to WHAT?

So I'm at work Friday afternoon, and suddenly all of my Internet browser windows pop to this "Welcome" screen, with instructions on how to connect with the Internet. Since we've been connected to the Internet for over a year, this seems dubious. And what particularly gets me are the following instructions (I've obscured the ISP name so you can't tell who it is):

  • Click the “Download” button on this page to download the C=mc=st installation software and begin the installation process.
  • Note: Please temporarily disable any firewall, anti-virus and pop-up blocking software currently running on your computer before running the installation software. (emphasis mine)
When I hover the mouse over the "Download" button, the URL shown is NOT clearly a C=mc=ast address. Do they think I'll cheerfully comply when they unexpectedly ask me to disable my protection systems and execute an unknown program? I say, WTF? This seems to be the computer equivalent of getting an official-looking letter in your mailbox that reads: "Representatives will be in your area today! To allow us to serve you better, please unlock your doors, drop your pants, close your eyes and bend over."

The nice lady at the computer place three doors down (our service reseller) called C=mc=ast when I asked. Apparently the Customer Service person there initially couldn't understand why we didn't just download and run the software (!), but finally either comprehended or got tired of arguing and agreed to take care of it. Service came back about two hours later.

Am I wrong, or if one was phishing, wouldn't this be just a perfect mode of attack? Perhaps I'm paranoid. But when I was married, my primary responsibility was to ensure that no member of the household was eaten by wild animals, and I didn't have a 100% survival rate by opening the door to every predator that asked to come in.
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