Some people I know are "sending" me spam email, wether they're using hotmail, gmail or others.
This also making some of them sending artificial communication in Windows Live Messenger while they're actually offline.
Commonly, there are links that say one thing, and actually redirect to something else.
This is why I've decided to post some info on this.
What to do to prevent
1) Do not respond to those "messenger bots" talking to you in WLM (usually the contact is set as offline)
2) Block "people" you don't know and is asking to join your friends, network or whatever (do give yourself the trouble of blocking them)
3) Install an anti-virus (some free: Avast!, AVG)
4) Keep firewall and system updated and active, running regular spyware and virus checking (I recomend SpyBot Search & Destroy for Spyware removal)
5) Do NOT click on those links in awkward emails (mainly english and brazilian). These emails have usually no formatting, special characters or ponctuation, and have only one objective: getting you to click on the blue link. So DON'T!
Something I usually do is place the mouse over the link or copy it and paste somewhere
so I can tell what URL exactly does the email want me to go to. Most are small links (http://bit.something) or crazy php pages (http://whatever.com/aassdd1222.php)
What to do when "hacked"
1) Cleansing. Update Spybot and Anvi-vírus (uninstall and reinstall them first if getting awkward events happening). Then, run the full system checks for both.
2) Open the mighty Internet Explorer, check the home page and clear all cache and temporary files. If possible, reset everyting (Tools, Internet Options, Advanced (tab), and "Reset")
3) Erase all contents of folders (some folders may be hidden)
- C:\Users\[You]\AppData\Local\Temp (path my differ by OS)
4) Change recovery options for any email account (security question/answer, backup email, and such)
5) Change email account / live id password. Use a "hard" password:
- special characters (@, _)
- preferably don't use actual words (cat, dog, hello, person). try acronyms (LOL)
- don't use personal info (name, birth date, girlfriend's name, so on)
e.g. ILSPS@1985 (I Like Strong PasswordS)
More info on these Google postings. Look for "Popular answer"