11 December 2007

4 days of hell

some of you already know what happened, but here's a quick rundown of the nightmare i had experienced the past 4 days.

all was well and i was living life as usual, but early saturday morning at about 2 am new york time, i got a few calls from my parents and a friend, saying that they have received an email from "me", saying that i was stranded in africa and had no more money, and to please send some over immediately.

what the real situation was, that i had been so tired from all my final projects that i had knocked out and was asleep in my apartment in manhattan!!

while i was sleeping, someone from africa/nigeria/benin/wherever, had hacked into my computer and then to my email account which is linked also to my blog, and then to my bank account.

so cut the long story short, i just went to hell and back and it wasn't a fun ride at all.

this guy had emailed every single person that i have ever emailed before, which includes all friends and strangers, impersonating me and asking them for money. some were pissed off with "me", thinking that i, the real gilda, was trying to extort money from them. some were really worried for me and perhaps almost fell into the traps of those identity thieves.

they had also hacked into my paypal and online bank account. i hurried to the police precinct to make a report, and tried all sorts of ways to contact google but for 3 to 4 days, i was left stranded by myself, and trust me, i might have been joking all about it but i was a total wreck.

not only was i worried that they might wipe out my entire bank account, i was worried one of my friends might actually transfer money over to them before i found a way to warn them, and i was worried they might find more personal information about me and god knows what they could do with that. identity theft is really scary.

(i was also worried i might lose this blog, and that's like months of thoughts, lost forever!!!)

i just managed to get back control of my account, and in the meantime i have reformatted and reinstalled everything on my macbook.

add all that to the stress of my final projects, and i was ready to explode. you know how you get so anxious sometimes, you can't even breathe?

that was me.

anyway, it's 5 am and i've been up trying to contact and explain the situation to as many people as possible since i got back access to my account about an hour ago, and what i really should be doing is my work that i'm supposed to hand in tomorrow!

thank you, all of you, who were so worried for me the last few days. some were worried that i was really trapped in africa and needed money, some were worried that i was getting too stressed over the whole situation. whatever it was, thank you, and i'll only get better from now.

well, back to more sketches i guess!! more updates and a proper post on what happened in a couple of days. in the meantime, take care, of yourself and of your computer and of your identity!!

learn from my mistakes, people, and make sure your computer is a secure as it can be.