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Galco Industrial Electronics’ Mail List Gets Hacked

If you’ve ever given you email address to Galco Industrial Electronics, then you’re probably receiving a whole lot more spam than you ever did before (unless you have good aggressive spam filtering). Galco’s email marketing list was recently stolen.

SpamIt turns out that it wasn’t actually Galco itself that was hacked, but most likely a mail list service called iContact, or another one called AWeber. How do we know this? I happen to use an email privacy service called Sneakemail. You tell Sneakemail your real address, and then they let you create dozens or even hundreds of throw-away email addresses, that can all forward to your real account. When I gave Galco my email address, I created a unique throw-away address ([email protected]). I never heard from them for a very long time. All of a sudden I started receiving dozens of spam messages a week at that address, and I’d never given that address to anyone else. I also started receiving spam messages at other sneakemail addresses at the same time. Sneakemail itself did some investigating to find out what happened, and here’s the story of the breach.

Thankfully, now I can just delete the affected addresses, and the spam just stops. In the few cases where I care to remain in contact with the company, I can actually create a new Sneakemail address and give it to them.

For this reason alone, I recommend the Sneakemail service. It helps in other ways too – for instance, you know if the company itself sold your email address because you know you only gave it to them. Stopping the spam is as easy as deleting the address.


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