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Evony Spam Attacks Bloggers

GamePolitics is reporting that the browser-based MMO Evony has angered bloggers with its assult of comment spam.

Popehat writes:

Online pharmacies and questionable purveyors of herbal remedies advertise by comment spam… Porn sites advertise by comment spam… Fraudulent financial services advertise by comment spam…

Legitimate business, and legitimate sites, do not advertise by comment spam. I associate comment spam with the underbelly of the web, with fraud and crime and child porn… Maybe Evony’s site won’t inflict malware on my computer. But I won’t take that chance. Given the company Evony has chosen to keep, you shouldn’t either.

GameStooge can report that it has had a torrent of comment spam from Evony, and fortunately, it was caught and held by our Akismet software. It’s odd because Evony is advertised normally via Google ads, too.

Regardless, the comment spam convinces me not to even visit their site. Usually, visiting a comment spammed site means viruses, unwanted cookies, and so forth.

[UPDATE (July 15): Apparenly, the Evony spam was not from the publisher or developer, but from gamers who used software called iEvony to gain credits through new user referrals, according to MMO Grindhouse.]

Cool Kids Are into Social Media, AMIRITE


    4 Responses to “Evony Spam Attacks Bloggers”

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    1. Bruceongames Says:

      There are two problems here.
      1) Evony is using Google adwords, which the owner of a site can stop. So Evony keep using different urls to bypass this.
      2) Akismet stops the huge number of spam comments on blogs that Evony are generating.

      Evony comes from Chinese gold farmers, they are going first party. There are also a lot of complaints from people who have lost money to them.

      I have collated much information on this here: http://www.bruceongames.com/2009/07/10/dont-play-evony/

    2. captbasch Says:

      Here’s our take on their spam abuse and their new drastic action against their members (after we complained that day) : http://www.mmogrindhouse.com/game-news/bizarre/do-you-have-what-it-takes-to-be-the-next-spam-queen/

    3. Lee Says:

      I am a student studying computer games design at uni and decided to investigate Evony.com.
      Just to see what some of these games are like etc. etc.
      The game is actually kind of cool (found myself addicted and even spent a little money on it).
      But I started to notice HUGE bandwidth use by the site as I played.
      I am not the only one either, there are comments on the evony forums about this.
      This is odd because all of the client info, the animations etc. are all downloaded in one big download at the start.
      There is no streaming media so I began to wonder what was going on.

      To cut a long story short I decided to break the law and reverse engineer Evony’s client.
      Not to cheat. Not to rip them off or even to use even a scrap of the code.
      But just to poke about a bit and find out what was going on, maybe even offer them some ways to improve things.

      Aside from the fact that the whole thing is very poorly constructed (it is really very beginner coder level stuff. Reminds me of a lot of
      what the first year students produce for assignments) it contained some very interesting information.

      Included with the client are 2 peices of tracking software that monitor your web use and which applications you have open while the client is running.
      These do not install independently on the machine though due to the limitations of flash and do not actually damage anything.
      But they harvest massive volumes of information. My firewall was blocking a lot of outgoing transmissions and it turns out that these
      were the data trying to be sent out. So they know nothing about me. lol.
      However there is a LOT of data coming IN over the ports the client uses. In otherwords it is downloading something into my cache for use later.
      I have bandiwdth restriction which slows these types of tricks down and I completely clear my cache every couple of hours if I am heavily using the net.

      I also noticed that all the varanbles etc. are named Civony still and that there are multiple references to UMGE.
      Even a couple of folders are simply called UMGE, one of these folders contains one of the spyware programs.
      So I can only guess at where the data would end up if I didnt have a good firewall.

      There are also commented out sections in the code which contain references to UMGE and Lam himself, though low on details.

      Thank you for reading this.

      Lee

    4. Lee Says:

      I got the new version Evony 3.08. My older version was 2.16.
      The new version has all references to Eric Lam and UMGE removed.
      Neither the comments in the hex code nor the decompiled Actionscript have anything that refers to them.
      Also the scripts that enumerated the active programs and sent and retrieved data with the remote servers is gone,
      except for the actual game network link to the Evony.com game servers.

      Even the code is a bit neater and more efficient.
      At least the heavy scrutiny on them is having some pluses. lol.

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