There have been a couple of weird things going in Dukane Towers just lately all of which can be traced back to the dear ole internet. There have been many articles covering how we are all being watched and monitored electronically via various forms of social media, most of which I’ve always taken with a pinch of salt, but now I begin to wonder if there is indeed something more sinister afoot after all. Even stranger all of these weird things have taken place since our move to Malaysia, or at least we have begun to notice them since our move.
First weird thing, there is an online shopping site in Asia called Lazarda, we used it when we were back in the Phils and we’ve used it here in Malaysia all without any problems, in fact I would go so far as to say that I would happily recommend this site to anyone who is out in this neck of the woods. So the other day Memsahib is playing one of her games whilst listening to the Archers on the radio, yes she can multitask, when she lets out a shriek so I hurry over thinking something catastrophic has happened. Turns out it was when she finished the level in this particular game the inevitable adverts appeared and this time it was one for Lazarda. Nothing to spooky in that I agree until we had a closer examination of the content of this advert. It was just a horizontal bar broken up into about half a dozen segments containing various products along with their respective prices, again not to spooky, but the closer examination showed that the bar was full of all the products we’d just been looking at over the last few days! Hence the shriek.
We don’t just use Lazarda to shop, quite often we use it to get a rough idea of prices for a particular item, and in this case it was for a new laptop as Memsahib’s old one had finally given up the ghost. So there was this advert containing all of the laptops we had viewed earlier. Another weird thing about this was the fact that we’d been looking for her new laptop on my machine yet here was all we had viewed on an advert that appeared on her machine! We did some further tests by going back to Lazarda, on my machine, and looking at an eclectic mix of stuff, curtains, foodmixers, socks and snorkel masks, none of which we either had any intention of purchasing or had ever added to the shopping cart. Sure enough by that evening the Lazarda advert had returned now containing all what we had looked at earlier that day.
Second weird thing I have noticed concern’s dear old Facebook or more specifically the people to follow list that you have to flick right to left to see that has suddenly begun regularly appearing on my news feed. Now to be clear I’m not talking receiving a friend request or going to find friends on that separate page but rather that strange list of people you‘re recommended to follow all of whom used to be friends of friends. Well I have begun to notice that more and more of these people, who appear perfectly nice on the surface, do not have any mutual friends with me and I wonder why FB would deem these said people as interesting to me. A certain Mr Zuckerberg keeps appearing on my news feed although he is far too important a person to appear in some crummy old list of nobodies, no Mr Zuckerberg has a news feed all of his own, and as it proudly announces that he has some eighty million followers I do wonder why he so determined to add me to his list. I can only presume that he cannot achieve whatever he is trying to achieve without having me as a friend!
Anyway I digress, I don’t usually take much notice of this horizontal list, although I am intrigued as to how these people end up on my list, especially those who do not have any mutual friends with me. The answer came a few weeks ago when I noticed a name on the list and had one of those ‘where do I know you from moments. Now I know I’m old and my brain cells are most probably withering away at an alarming rate but I stared at the name for about five minutes before finally clicking on it to see a better look at the tiny photo. I had my eureka moment instantly when being shown this persons FB page as I immediately recognised one of the realtors we used way back in February of this year to help us search for a property. Again my first thought was how the hell did they end up on my people to follow list and also where were all of the other realtors we used in our search?
Last week I had a similar experience as another name appeared which I recognised immediately as the person concerned has a very unique surname. Now I had never met this person face to face and in fact the only contact we had ever had was three emails last year! I asked a question, they answered and I sent a thank you by reply and that was it. Much like the realtor who appeared, although we did meet face to face a few times, the majority of our contact was again by email. Therefore that can only lead to one single conclusion, FB have hacked my email account or at the very least have hacked my email contacts list as that is the only way these two people could ever appear on my potential friends list. Either that or this is one hell of a coincidence which I’m not buying for one moment.
Of course this does raise further questions, why just those two people? There were quite a few realtors we contacted when we first came here in Feb to do some property hunting. Also why a person with whom I have only ever had a three email conversation? Does this mean that all I have ever had email contact with will gradually begin appearing on this list? I must add for clarification purposes that at no time have I granted FB or any other application access to my emails for very obvious reasons, and I always log out never leaving my email account open, yet here is a clear indication that FB could have only got these people by gaining access to my email account something that I have never and will never grant!
Till next time. Unless I’m carted off by whoever is watching me!