Crime Files Network

Archive for the ‘ARTICLES’ Category

Osama scams: FBI sounds alarm

Asher Moses

May 4, 2011 – 7:58AM

An example of one of the scams going around on Facebook.An example of one of the scams going around on Facebook.

The FBI is warning computer users against unsolicited emails and social network posts purporting to show photos or videos of the killing of Osama bin Laden.

The bureau says they may contain a virus that can steal personal identification information or infect a computer. Such malicious software could even be passed along unknowingly by a friend or family member.

The FBI urged the public to adjust privacy settings on social networking sites to make it more difficult for people to post material on their page.

Advertisement: Story continues below

The image used in many of the scams is the fake picture of a dead Osama bin Laden that has been doing the rounds on social media – and even some mainstream media outlets like Channel Nine – over the last few days. The bloodied image of the corpse is a composite of two images – one a real picture of Bin Laden taken by Reuters in 1998.

Security firm McAfee provided some examples of the lures that are being used to trick people into opening the malicious links:

– “See video in which Osama bin Laden is shown holding a newspaper with today’s date and disprove his possible death reported by OBAMA.” (A purported link to a video supposedly disproving Osama bin Laden’s death)

– “OSAMA-BIN-Laden-aparece-segurando-jornal-com-a-data-de-hoje-obama-se-passa-por-mentiroso.exe” (A malicious executable purporting to offer photos of Osama bin Laden holding today’s paper – please see spam image attached)

– “fotos-do-osama-morto.exe” (A malicious executable purporting to offer photos of a dead Osama bin Laden)

– “pictures-of-osama-dead.exe” (A malicious executable purporting to offer photos of a dead Osama bin Laden)

David Marcus, director of security research at McAfee Labs has published more examples of the Osama scams on his blog.

One social network version of the scam asks users to copy and paste a script into their browser in order to see a video of bin Laden’s death.

“It certainly DOES NOT lead to the promised video because there is no released video! What it does do is spam your wall with messages trying to get people to do the same thing. Do not be fooled,” wrote Marcus.

Other links lead to fake anti-virus sites that try to con people into believing their computer is infected with viruses before charging them for a clean.

Kaspersky Lab reseacrhers Fabio Assolini said scammers were also poisoning search results in Google Images with links leading to malicious pages.

McAfee said people should be cautious and especially on guard when receiving messages that purport to offer photos of bin Laden’s body, funeral at sea or any other additional details.

– with AP   

7 Items You Won’t Believe

Are Actually Legal

By: Robert Evans

February 02, 2009 3,620,939 views

Drugs, artillery emplacements, napalm, prostitution – sometimes it seems like the best things in life are illegal. For some reason, the fascists who control this country don’t believe in your God given right to smoke meth and man a 155-millimeter Howitzer.

Luckily for us, there are a lot of awesome things out there that Uncle Sam amazingly hasn’t taken away from us yet. Read this article, and then go and pick up one of everything while you still can!


Holy Shit, Really?

Yes. There are currently no federal laws governing or restricting the ownership of flame-throwing devices. Some states have laws restricting possession of flamethrowers, with violations only considered to be misdemeanors, but 40 states have absolutely no laws whatsoever concerning flamethrowers. Only in America would a device capable of launching rivers of fire at people be less regulated than marijuana.

Careful with that pot, it looks dangerous.

Where Can I Get One?

You can sometimes find professionally made flamethrowers being sold by private buyers online, some for as little as $300. Also, if you’re unsure on how to use your new device, but you want the source of your advice to be batshit insane, you could pick up Ragnar Benson’s delightful read, Breath Of The Dragon: Homebuilt Flamethrowers, which we can only hope comes with a cellphone with the numbers 9 and 1 already dialed.

What Should I Do With it?

Actually using your flamethrower is somewhat more difficult than acquiring it. It seems that lawmen these days have rules about when and where you’re allowed to shoot gallons of flaming fuel. We recommend making friends with someone who owns a few acres of land out in the country and then going hog wild. If you accidentally start a wildfire, don’t fret: Flamethrowers are just as good at stopping fires as they are at starting them. Just burn everything around the fire to cinders, and it won’t have anywhere to spread!

Holy Balls, Why is it Legal?

Cracked cannot overstate the importance of destroying the horrifying bee menace. As a potent combination of “deadly” and “too small to shoot,” the Africanized Honey Bee is quite possibly mankind’s most dangerous enemy. Enter the flamethrower: your first, last, and only line of defense against the black and yellow hordes. In 1968, Brazilian firefighters armed with flamethrowers defended a group of children from the onslaught of buzzing death. This is apparently not an uncommon happening in nations fighting off the advancing bee legions.

Salvia Divinorum

Holy Shit, Really?

Salvia divinorum is a member of the Lamiaceae family, which makes it a cousin of the mint plant. When properly prepared, salvia can be smoked in order to bring on incredibly intense, at times paralyzing, hallucinations. Most salvia trips are short in duration, but very powerful and jarring. All side effects of salvia are gone within an hour, and it doesn’t show up on standard drug tests.

Depending on the amount of smoke inhaled, users of salvia may experience hallucinations on par in intensity with those caused by drugs like LSD or DMT. Since most users lose consciousness and drift off into a world of fractal shapes and green women as soon as they hit the pipe, it has not gained much popularity as a ‘party’ drug.

It kind of makes the world look like this for about six minutes.

Where Can I Get One?

Salvia is still legal in most US states. You can pick it up at most well-stocked ‘head’ shops, but the cheapest and highest quality salvia is usually found online. Make sure to check your local laws to see if you can legally purchase and possess it in your state. If not, at least you still have your flamethrower.

What Should I do With it?

Here at Cracked, the only “high” we’re interested in is the natural high we get from bringing comedy to the world (and sometimes crystal meth), so we have no advice here. However there are a number of educational videos that recommend gardening, writing letters to congressmen, and driving while on salvia.

Also, we do not recommend teaching while on salvia.

Holy Balls, Why is it Legal?

Salvia is actually pretty harmless, as intoxicants go. There have been a few accusations of its involvement in causing a suicidal mindset, but evidence is spurious at best. In fact a number of scientists believe that salvia may act as an anti-depressant, and its effective use in ending cocaine addiction has been noticed as well. Dr. Bryan Roth believes the drug has the potential to help those suffering from schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s and has urged the government not to ban salvia. With the potential to cure depression, Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia and cocaine addictions, it’s a wonder salvia isn’t a mandatory side dish in high school cafeterias across America. We’re going to go ahead and say that last one is a bad idea.

Tannerite (An Explosive Compound)

Holy Shit, Really?

Tannerite is sold legally as a binary compound, meaning you mix two harmless powders and get something that goes boom. Just apply the mixture to the object you wish to blow up and then hit it with extreme force or heat.

Where Can I Get Some?

You can buy tannerite straight from the distributor. Premade shaped charges can be bought, or you can just get huge containers of the powders. We recommend only purchasing small amounts, as the temptation to blow it all up at once rises exponentially the more you have.

This man purchased 100 pounds of the stuff and was unable to resist the temptation. The blast was heard for miles, and sent scraps of shrapnel flying almost a quarter of a mile.

What Should I do With it?

Find an old car at a junkyard or ex-girlfriend’s house. Drive it out to the same remote place where you use your flamethrower. Now, coat the car with tannerite, stand very far back and shoot it with a rifle. The results should look something like this:

Note to Women: this is pretty much what having sex with a Cracked writer is like, but for hours.

Congratulations! You are now having the most fun a citizen of the United States is legally allowed to have. Now lock the guns and explosives up and smoke some salvia to celebrate.

Holy Balls, Why is This Legal?

Like flamethrowers, tannerite actually has quite a few legal uses, including avalanche control. Despite being both legally available and explosive, no deaths have ever been linked to the compound. Due to its binary nature, tannerite is perfectly safe to store and transport. Statistically, a suburban swimming pool is much more likely to end human lives.

Improvised Weaponry

Holy Shit, Really?

Homemade firearms. They are also known as garage guns, Chechnyan Firecrackers and scrap weapons. Most garage guns are made out of easily acquired pieces of trash and industrial debris. They can be as simple as a lead tube with a rubber-band-powered firing pin, or a fully automatic pistol made out of aluminum cans and assorted sprockets.

Garage guns vary in quality from relatively good…

… to plastic deathtraps.

Where Can I Get One?

You can make one. Improvised firearms are legal under federal law, as long as the weapon does not violate any existing gun laws. You can even make silencers and sawed-off homemade shotguns if you get the proper tax stamps. There are a variety of guides for building home-made guns available for free online. Chechnyan rebels are the most prolific creators (and users) of these guides.

What Should I Do With Them?

The same things you would do with any other gun: load it with tracer rounds and blow up cars covered in tannerite. Of course, since you’ll be shooting a DIY contraption made of scrap metal and prayers, both accuracy and safety will be far below acceptable standards. We recommend getting a gullible friend (perhaps the same person whose land you’re using) to fire the first few shots. If it explodes, you might need to go back to the drawing board.

We made this!

Holy Balls, Why is this Legal?

First of all, because a gun with an unrifled barrel is only accurate to a few inches. Since most professionally manufactured firearms are legal in the USA, banning homemade ones doesn’t make much sense. Neither China, the gun-control capital of the world, nor Russia have been able to stop their dissident populations from building their own firearms. Since you can literally build a gun out of the contents of a trash bin, any laws made to stop self-made firearms would be almost unenforceable.

Subscribe to Crime Files Network