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Beware the Dreaded Flipora
Hello all,

I recently reactivated my Facebook account so I could post updates to the OA Facebook pages when a new issue of V:FT comes out instead of having to ask one of my fellow editors to do it.

Shortly thereafter I received a notification about some updates from a friend of mine who I know uses Facebook. Thinking this was something to do with that, I started to accept looking at these and was quickly taken into a page for something called Flipora. The page seemed to be saying that it wanted me to join something and that as part of that it would get to do what it wanted with my address book. I immediately backed out, but apparently I somehow gave it permission to do something in the process.

Since this happened, I've had two different people contact me to say they've received notifications similar to what I received from my friend and asking about them. I've also received one to my work email address. All of these addresses were in my address book. A bit of research turns up that Flipora is 'the Indian version of Google' and is apparently something like the mutant offspring of Amazon's 'your recommendations' feature combined with social media and a search engine. It is supposed to recommend other websites you might like based on your browsing history. Apparently it also likes to get into your address book via a sign up procedure that is rather murky and then send out what is essentially a form of advertising spam to everyone there. This is what I got from a friend and what is now going out based on my address book.

I've told anyone who contacted me about this to disregard and delete these notifications. I've also clicked on an unsubscribe link that is included, both as my work email and from my personal email. This seems to have worked so far, although I did come across an old forum exchange (circa 2012) in the course of my research that indicated it doesn't work - but fingers crossed so far.

The upshot of this:

If you receive any kind of notification about my email ( doing updates or anything else and are asked to click a button to view them - do NOT click the button!!! Instead, delete the notification or try the unsubscribe link if you keep receiving things (note, it's a two parter, you have to unsub from receiving anything from me and then from anyone else).

I'm going to be sending out a notice to my non-OA associates and friends about this as well very shortly while imagining the beautiful mental picture of the originators of the thing (to staff and executives of Flipora basically) being cast into the Queen of Pain to scream in agony for all eternity.

Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause and we now return you to your regularly scheduled program.


I just got something like this from Alan Kazlev's email account - I declined to click on it as you recommended - no ill effects. I wonder if Alan has the same problem. He is somewhat of an Indophile, and maybe he thinks it is a good thing- but it sounds dodgy to me. I'll drop him a message.

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