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Old 08-19-2013, 05:07 PM   #1
dumbunny007
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XMPP / Jabber / Tronet addresses??


Hi, all
I've scoured the web trying to find this out on my own, and I have decided that I am not going to find an answer that way. The question is simple, really - what are these?:

[username535]@tronet.ru
[user_name27]@ubuntu-jabber.de
[username175]@xmpp.stage.aws.mthinx.com


I think I understand that they're all related to some kind of chat / messaging service, right? The issue is that I discovered these addresses in my 13yo son's gmail contacts and, judging by the suggestive usernames, I'm afraid he might be hanging out in the wrong chatrooms. Or could it be that these are just spam? I can't find anything that says contacts are automatically added by any other way than sending, replying to, or forwarding to an address, so I'm stumped.

Thank you in advance!
 
Old 08-20-2013, 12:29 PM   #2
displace
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Those are not email addresses, they're jabber/XMPP addresses. And by the looks of it I'd say they're some anonymous jabber accounts that were probably generated by a script or a webchat program somebody was using. Afaik gmail does not seem to update the person's nickname in google chat and instead displays the raw address (which annoys me a bit). And to be honest I've had a lot of useless contacts like this popup in my contact list too.
 
Old 08-21-2013, 01:57 PM   #3
dumbunny007
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Thanks for the response. A few questions:

-When you say "a script or webchat program somebody was using," does that mean it's likely that 'somebody' was indeed chatting with another user on google chat (or other client?) this gmail account?

-Would the user/nickname be the the same as the [usernamewhatever]@... and only temporarily be used for an individual chat session (explaining why they can't be found in a google search)? Keywords like "naughty" are kind of the red flag here.

-Is it possible that there was no chatting involved and it's some kind of spam-related issue? I've heard of people getting emails or SMSs along the lines of "Hey, come check out my pics and chat with me" from some unknown number or address, but they're usually from some gibberish address and are obviously spam. I don't think I've ever seen any Linux related spam. Since it appears that these (at least the jabber and xmpp addresses) are legitimate chat clients/servers, it doesn't seem like the same thing. And then there's the thing about Google's auto-added contacts only being ones you've actively communicated with.

-You said you've had addresses like this show up in your contact list, too -- are they related to previous chat sessions, or are they just popping up out of nowhere?

Sorry for my ignorance and all the questions. I just want to make sure I understand everything before I go confront or accuse anybody. It occurred to me that a couple of my son's older (15yo) friends have been over a few times and had access to his computer, so it could possibly have been one of them. Or maybe that's just wishful thinking by a naive mom.

Thanks again!


Quote:
Originally Posted by displace View Post
Those are not email addresses, they're jabber/XMPP addresses. And by the looks of it I'd say they're some anonymous jabber accounts that were probably generated by a script or a webchat program somebody was using. Afaik gmail does not seem to update the person's nickname in google chat and instead displays the raw address (which annoys me a bit). And to be honest I've had a lot of useless contacts like this popup in my contact list too.
 
Old 08-22-2013, 01:21 PM   #4
displace
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- Regarding the webchat thing it's probably software on a certain server that was used to create an account on that server. How that contact appeared in gmail chat I have no idea. At this point I'm not really sure how contacts are added to google chat because I haven't used it for like several years. I think it's enough when you chat with someone or send them an email, and it gets added automatically.

- As far as I understand it nicknames and usernames are separate things. Although I've noticed few of the jabber clients I've tried will actually use the nickname... in most cases they will simply display the jabber address (i.e. username@jabber-server.org) instead. Not sure this is due to the client or the server software not supporting XMPP nicknames, but a google account of my colleague does not display my jabber nickname properly.

- As I said I am unsure how those contacts were added. If the server on their side supports email, it is possible that somebody simply replied to that email, and the contact got added. The best way to avoid spam is not to post your email in public places. Although that's only a partial solution. I've had this challmate of mine back in highschool. She was like the happy person in class and would send greets and flowers to all people in her email address box. Not to complain about her cheerfulness, but this is an excellent way of how spammers get email addresses. Her emails contained the addresses of everybody in her address book.

- I haven't seen them popup for no reason. At least not those of people I haven't talked to.

It's probably just some spam thing. Delete those accounts and see, if they appear again. If they do then it's possible your son is chatting with them. Just teach your son about dangers on the internet. When I was his age I wasn't being careful either and I posted my real name almost everywhere. Lucky me, I had no digital camera at the time or else I would have uploaded pictures as well.

~Biz
 
Old 08-22-2013, 06:52 PM   #5
dumbunny007
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Registered: Aug 2013
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Well, I have some new information to throw into the mix here. I didn't realize that a gmail contacts list could be connected to multiple accounts. It looks like he set up a second gmail account on his phone, and one of those contacts (the @xmpp... one) is under that account. It's actually the only contact for that account...which makes it look like he might have set it up specifically for chatting ? Or maybe not. I'm not even sure how he knows how to do all this.

Another thing about the addresses -- I have found lists of chat servers that include tronet.ru and ubuntu-jabber.de, but I can't figure out the xmpp.stage.aws.mthinx.com address. Dissecting it, I've learned that mthinx.com appears to be {shudder} a camera app, and aws is Amazon Web Services (cloud / remote server?). I think .stage means something specific in Linux code, but can't figure out what. How does that all fit together? It sounds like video chatting through a remote server, which sounds like no good.

At any rate, the fact that we now have two addresses with chat 'contacts' makes it seem less spammy.. and more sneaky. Don't you think?

I still want to blame those older kids...
 
  


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