In spite of Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell warning Russia to “quit messing around in our elections,” Russians have not stopped. They continue their influence and propaganda. With social media such as Facebook and Twitter taking note and making changes, Russian propagandists have turned to Word Press blogs.
Earlier this year, I received notifications from Word Press for email followers. I didn’t pay much attention to the first one because there are people who follow this blog via email who do not have Word Press accounts to comment. When I received two more notifications on the same day, and they too had Outlook email addresses, I knew that was not usual. I checked a Word Press forum and found that others were experiencing the same and were concerned about it.
A thread in one Word Press forum began in January 2018. Also in January, a blogger named Ray wrote what he was experiencing with these strange email followers.
Another thread began in March, and still another was started in April. A staff person posted in April;
“My guess is it’s an attempt to overload our (WordPress.com’s) mail servers by making us send out more subscription emails than our system can handle. The other option is that they’re hoping bloggers will email them at that address to thank them for following, which will give them access to active email addresses which they can then attempt to spam or hack directly.”
“The follows in themselves are not an actual threat, though – our system can handle many times more emails than these additional subscriptions are making us send, and there’s no way receiving these follows can compromise your site or account, so really all they’re achieving is to annoy people.”
I only access Word Press through computer, and I use the old way of assessing the Admin side of the blog. What I learned earlier this year is that if I go to the Word Press ribbon that appears at the top of the blog when I’m signed in and click “My Sites,” that I can scroll down to where it says “People”. Clicking that takes me to a screen with three tabs, one of which is labeled “Email Followers”. By clicking there, I can not only see who is following my blog via email, but I can also remove them. Read the rest of this entry