Archive for January, 2014

Access to Public Version of Interactive Family Tree Curtailed

Sunday, January 26th, 2014

I supposed it was just a matter of time, but spammers have found a way to take advantage of the TNG software I use for the interactive family trees on this site. There have been two versions, one open to the public containing less information, and a second available only to those who are family members and which requires a log-in and password. This private tree contains (except for living people) more information and all my notes.

Some automated system is sending me messages from the public version by taking advantage of the “Proposed Change” function available when viewing individual records. (No one is able to change anything except me.) There should be no sensitive information about people such as addresses or phone numbers on the site. Since I have never asked anyone to register for the public site, there are no email addresses or other information to steal. I am not getting any ads or websites posted in the emails I am receiving. I do not know what the purpose of the spamming is.

I have no evidence of any spam from the protected family site. If anyone is getting messages purporting to come from me or the TNG Family Tree Software, please let me know.

Until I can gather more information, I have closed public access to the Hasselbacher Family Trees altogether. Those registered for the Private Trees should see no difference. Registration for the private tree requires that a user satisfy me that they are actually members of the Hasselbacher family in some way and willing to contribute information.

Sorry about all this. There are tens of thousands of names in the database, most very distant from the Hasselbacher main lines. However, because Google has been able to explore the site, many individuals have had access to wonderful information about their own more distant family lines.

When I have updated the software and consulted with its creators and am comfortable that we can proceed, I will make appropriate access available again.