Warning: Super long blog entry with a blow-by-blow account of what happened!
A big big thank you HUG FOR EVERYONE WHO TRIED TO HELP ME! I don't care if you skinny or fat, sweaty or clean, female or male! I hug everyone! MUACKS! I am sorry if I was unable to reply some of your kind emails, but I was overwhelmed with all that's happening, and the mails were simply too many to reply.
To the people who say I have this coming, I would like to fart in your face! POOOT! Smelly not? I hope it is. I know it's really childish, but I cannot resist this. Stupid people are all around!
Since what goes around comes around you say...
I must be a really nice person! I HAVE EXTREMELY GOOD KARMA! See what I told you? Buy Good-Karma tissues, it works! Amazing, really, the good luck that I had.. you would think I drank Felix Felicis.
This is a more detailed (and funnier) account of what happened.
At around 430am, my IE wasn't working, so I used Mozilla to log into my Gmail. I clicked on the link and was immediately logged in. To my surprise, I only had 2 emails inside, both unread.
I thought, siao liao, must be this stupid Gmail cock up. I laughed. I really laughed, because my gmail account looks so stupid with only 2 mails in them. I refreshed the page; Gmail logged me out.
Still smiling a bit, I tried to log in, but obviously cannot.
My heart going 'pong pong pong' (just like the sound that SKII girl makes), I clicked on "forgot your password?" and Gmail said they will send a mail to my secondary email, which I have no fucking idea what it is.
Already, I was close to tears because I knew that the 2 emails I saw was because the rest were deleted.
Hyperventilating, I clicked onto Blogger.com, expecting, hoping, that the site will load up.
KNN! Was logged out.
I started to break out in cold sweat, which is no mean feat in the non-airconditioned room that I stay in.
Fingers trembling, I tried once, twice, thrice to log into blogger, and I cannot.
I clicked on Blogger's "forgot your password?" was forced into tears, because blogger sends the password to my gmail account! FUCK!
Next: xiaxue.blogspot.com - When I saw the white background load, a small part of me died. The small part belongs to somewhere along the length of my legs, which explains why I am so short.
And then I broke down completely.
I called Turodrique (with some difficulty mine you, as fingers weren't really working), because he is always so rational... Phone off.
Called Kenny, yes, in Malaysia. Apparently he sleeping.
Called Shuyin... A GOD-INDUCED MIRACLE! She picked up! I blabbled incoherently, while she gave sympathetic notes and asked me questions.
This is the mark of a true friend. Instead of going back to sleep, she stayed awake with me, talking on MSN and helping me check facts and refreshing the hacked site to read the comments for clues, all the way till morning.
Meanwhile, I was feeling more and more helpless by the minute. It all seemed very bleak! I didn't receive any emails from Gmail to my other email accounts, and to get back your email without going through the secondary email you must answer a few questions.
Besides the usual location, name etc, Gmail also asked these very ridiculous questions to verify I am me.
- What's your security question?
- When did u start using Gmail?
- What's the URL on your gmail invite?
LIKE WTF?? I mean seriously, got so many security questions, how I know it's which one? Can be "What is your ugliest pet?" or "Who's your daddy?!" right? Wah rau! And when did I start using gmail?
CAN YOU REMEMBER WHEN YOU STARTED USING UR EMAIL ACCOUNT? AND WHAT URL? WHAT RUBBISH ARE THEY ASKING?
Gmail said that if questions are unanswered they might not be able to give me my account back. I was quite horrified at this.
They said that I can try clicking on the 'forgot password' thing after five days, and get back my account by answering my own security question.
HELLO, YOU STUPID OR WHAT, THE HACKER CAN CHANGE THE SECURITY QUESTION RIGHT?!?
In a flurry of blind panic, I emailed both Gmail Support (a machine that doesn't work) and also Blogger Support... As a last resort, I even added BloggerBuzz as well as Biz Stone himself.
If you are interested, this was my email:
Hi you guys,
I am xiaxue, or Wendy Cheng, also known as the author of xiaxue.blogspot.com. My website is the Best Asian Blog 2004 and 2005 (www.bloggies.com). I've been featured on bloggerbuzz once as I am the first blogger to get a t-shirt endorsement deal.
Here's the article: http://buzz.blogger.com/2005/03/ambassador-xiaxue.html
My website, very unfortunately for me, as been hacked. If you care to look into xiaxue.blogspot.com, you can see what happened to it.
Very stupidly of me, my email account, which was firstname.lastname@example.org, has been hacked into as well.
I need to wait for gmail's confirmation to get back my gmail account, as for some reason it didn't send the password to my secondary email address. Therefore, unable to retrieve my blogger password from my email, I cannot log in.
I am pleading for help here. Can blogger help to recover my files, can it return me my password?
If you guys don't believe it is me, can I do anything, anything at all to verify myself? Call me! I'll even show you my id card. Anything! Because I am the real xiaxue! My livelihood is through my blog now, and it is so very very important to me. 2 years of hard work!!! I blogged so much, and it's all gone!
I hope blogger can help me with this. Despite having a readership of 10,000 a day and having many blogging platforms approach me, I stuck to using blogger and many people have followed suit.
If blogger cannot give me the account, then can it at least.... to the very least...make sure no one takes the username xiaxue until I get my account back? Which I most definitely will, once I get my gmail account back!
Biz, I am writing this email to you too, because I know you once left a comment on my blog, saying you like the blog.
I really hope you guys can help me.
Obviously the email was written in a state of hysterics. I cannot even begin to think properly.
The reason why the email to them sounded so arrogant and so eager to prove who I am is because I am scared that they ignore me. Blogger, which is owned by Google, is a really big American company with millions of blogs under their name. I am merely one of those many, I'm sure, who got hacked the day before.
That's why I stressed so much that my blog is an established one, hoping they will at least take notice. It was a last resort that I used.
I emailed myself on my xiaxue gmail account, pleading with the hacker to return me me blog. God, I sounded so pathetic.
He never read these mails...
Time passed, and the tears stopped. I have resigned to the fact that the blog is gone.
I took heart that I have saved my entries till May 2005, and I was determined to do up the site again, even if I had to put into entry by entry and re-uploading all my photos.
It was 730am, and I decided there is nothing more I can do, so I off-ed the computer. Minutes later, I realised my MSN password is the same as my gmail's!
I hastily turned on again, agitated that the hacker is causing me so much trouble.
Out of habit, I clicked on IE, and out of a very lucky habit again, I clicked on Gmail, which was on my favourites.
VOILA! I got in!
I sat there and I couldn't believe my good luck. This time, I didn't gong gong go and refresh the page, but hastily set a new password. With this, I got back my blogger account again, but all the blogs were gone, except for xiaxue.blogspot.com, which was horribly tainted.
REJOICE!!! I have gotten back everything that belongs to me! Well except the blogs and 3,000 emails, all deleted.
Brown cow called me, and gave me grandfatherly advice on choosing passwords properly. Thanks also James, for helping though you were in Japan, and you too Daryl and TT! My fellow Tomorrow editors are SWELL! I never felt so cared for by a team of IT experts!
I couldn't sleep, so I checked my other mails again (to see if anyone responded). I was doubtful that Gmail or Blogger replied, BUT Holy Mayonnaise! Biz Stone himself replied! Within 2 hours!
I couldn't believe my eyes:
I peed in my Pjs in joy, and Cloudy (my cute dog), who was sleeping underneath my chair, looked up quizzically at the sudden wetness.
It was then that I had a clear look at the Cloud...I realised, he didn't look like the usual fair and white Cloudy... He looked:
I wonder what this means. It is clearly symbolic of something!
Never mind, I still hugged the newly dark Cloud and skipped around the room in joy!
I got Biz Stone helping me! NOW WHO CAN BULLY ME, HUH, WHO?!
I got to sleep at 11am, Momo being extra nice to me (she was very worried too), and dream fretfully of shipping ridiculously expensive presents over to the US for Biz and the rest of the Blogger team, like Graham and John P. For the next two days, I didn't off my computer.
Holy shit, I slept for 2 hours and reporters were calling in from Today, ST and Newpaper!! Wah lau.
Rest of the day was spent taking photos for the newspapers and getting interviewed. Kinda felt good coz I can abuse the culprit - the reporters were only too glad too listen! Yay!
Apparently, my ST article was supposed to be on front page. I didn't even know the magnitude of the event! When I arrived at the very big SPH, I saw, at the hotel-like lobby, a serious-looking LED black screen with a scrolling marquee of red words, reciting the headline news of the day.
It was grandly situated above the receptionists' heads, alerting the world of important events unfolding as we read it here first.
What stock is dropping, Bloomberg this, reuters that, terrorists and accidents.
AND THEN I SAW IT:
HACKER DELETES ALL OF XIAXUE'S BLOG ENTRIES
Happily scrolling at the severe LED screen, as if it was worthy. MY NAME LEH (albeit a fake one), among others like Bush and our dear Mr Mah Bow Tan! I AM NOT WORTHY!!
I waited for a while to get the shot, waiting for the headlines to scroll back again, but all was black. The receptionist told me that the one I saw was the last time the headlines rolled for the day - it stops at 545 sharp.
GOT SO SUAY OR NOT YOU TELL ME? THAT I HAPPEN TO SEE IT FOR THE LAST TIME? Nonetheless:
You can ownself imagine lah hor.
Next day, articles:
And... Dare I show it?
Courtesy of ST
I look fucking fat can? We took so many photos, and many were not fat lor! They had to catch me when I was not sucking in, and obviously that stupid pose the tummy will drop to the side right. Chee...ken mcnugget.
Yeah lah, you are saying if I know I am fat then I don't wear like that lah! But hor, Newpaper wanted to do any article on sexy females, then they asked me to wear sexier what! How I know stupid ST also wanted a photoshoot that day?
I took photos in another red dress (very nice one, you will see on Sunday Newpaper!!) but ST HAD to choose this fugly one.
I think ST is out to sabo me. Throughout the article, I don't see the link to my webpage.
I don't know if this is delibrate, but WHAT IS THE POINT OF TELLING PEOPLE ABOUT A SITE IF YOU DON'T LINK THE SITE? A bit stupid right?
A bit of photoshop would have salvaged the photo, but did they bother? NO. Jerks!
Alas. London got bombed, so the article got pushed to page 16 instead of cover. My condolences to those affected, but that's another entry altogether.
The police report:
Smell accompanied me to the local police station to file a report. Him, covering himself with my fat article.
Together we can fight Crime!
Wah, our president looking down upon us, bestowing his infinite wisdom and sense of justice. Criminals see liao also scared.
While I give my report, Smelly (he is not really smelly by the way) reads the article for the first time...
"I look very fat in that photo hor?"
"You have always been fat what, since when you got thin before?"
"Wah lau you."
"Yeah lah, who ask you go wear like that... So fat still dare to wear like that."
And he pinches me on my side tummy and laughed. The policeman kindly lent me his baton and I whacked Smelly's head with it. He cried.
Smelly and I found this postcard, it is very funny!
I like the beng at the right leh! Don't you think his expression is damn realistic? And he really looks beng! So funny! The little boy at the back looks like a xiao gin nah.
(As we were very bored with the cop taking such a long time,) Smell said that the guy in the middle looks like he is very shocked.
I said, No, he looks like he is standing up to want to fight!
I imitated getting out of my chair suddenly with a shout of "NOT HAPPY AH?!" and I scared my friendly neighbourhood police. He stared at me.
Smell had a look at the postcard, and had at look at my article, and he said,
"JIE! Your black face looks like one of them leh!"
I have to say I thoroughly agree.
Later, after a lot of scrutiny at the photo, we also discovered something...
Atas bengs! Hahhahah lousy producer!
Ok now for the real thing! Check out the police report... It is actually damn funny coz the cop's grammar is... Here's a feast for those of you who say mine is bad!
Click to enlarge
Funny not? Hahaha...
Now I'm waiting for blogger and gmail's responses. You die, fucker! I'll get you if it's the last thing I do!
Ok this is a super long blog entry... I've got to go out soon, so i'll write just a bit more...
Analysing what the hacker did, I do not think he really hates me (how can he hate me when he doesnt even know me?) but was in for some fun (though it was malicious and at my expense) and attention.
How do I know? Because he could have done a lot worse if he sincerely disliked me to the core. Well, either that or he is really stupid.
Imagine the harm done should he publish all my private emails? Imagine if he didn't delete the blog, but mimicked a real blog entry that said I am closing down the site (to make me lose readers)?
But no. His actions were symbolic of a frisky teen who managed to get into an account of a famous person (I am famous coz I was on the ST scrolling marquee!), and rubbing his hands in glee.
Without thinking, he did what he thought was the most damaging: Deleting my mails and blogs.
He also, childishly, changed my gmail name to Mr Tan Kok Wan, and urged people to give him attention by allowing comments on my blog - even to the extent of writing such a childish blog entry.
He tried to cause me trauma by losing all my stuff. He tried to kill the online personality Xiaxue...
But what he did achieve in the end:
- That I emerge stronger than before
- He made me realise I have so many readers who care for me, and
- So many real-life friends who will be there for me
- Blogger will always be there for their consumers - me included, so I can rest assured.
- My blog is back, exactly the same before he tainted it
- Publicity from various newspapers, priceless. Readership is up to 15,000 a day now, unique visitors - and some new readers are bound to like me.
- Best of all, he himself being in jeopardy of going to jail for his mischief.
So now, the only thing that happened which is bad, is that my mails are all gone. Which is kinda ok, alot of junk inside anyway. =)
Last bit: There has been a lot of Anti-Xiaxue sentiments going on recently, and it kinda irks me because I feel that a lot of readers, from reading their comments, don't even know what is going on.
They simply jump onto the bandwagon and decide they don't like me, without substantial reasons.
For example, I read somewhere that someone thinks I deserve, and should have expected to be hacked because
1) I don't give up my seat to pregnant ladies
2) I was mean to taxi-snatching girl
3) I was mean to SPG and her fans surely took revenge.
OK let me explain myself once and for all.
1) I do give up seats to everyone who is needy. Please read that old, old article properly before accusing me - I am sick of explaining myself.
2) Cab-girl snatched my cab, and when online to a forum to say mean things about me, and these were FALSE mean things. She started it, geddit? I merely defended myself. What's wrong with that? Don't tell me you will swallow it if people accuse you like that.
3) I am sick sick sick of the SPG thing. I believe people who get themselves agitated over the SPG issue are in actual fact, non-readers of Izzy.
Those who read Izzy's blog, and sincerely appreciate it, I believe, are educated and mature individuals - not the slimeballs that talk so much. How do I know? Because she WRITES most of the time, and not just strip. Her prose is far too... dare I say that word again, cheam, for these stupid empty vessels who have so much to say.
Furthermore, readers of Izzy will realise that she herself is not upset over what I wrote - on both occasions no less.
I will say this in a very big font lest you miss it:
I AM OK WITH IT, SHE IS OK WITH IT, WHO ARE YOU TO TALK SO MUCH?
Well, that's all I have to say regarding my haters. Stop jumping on to the bandwagon like that, and do not assume what you read from other people's blogs (about me) are indeed true. Take some time, read through my archives - if you still find me so loathesome, go ahead and dislike me.
I am not that bad, really. I do think I am a nice girl - just a little more frank and hot-headed than any other girl on the streets - but essentially the same.
AND KENNY AND I ARE STILL GOOD FRIENDS, THANKS FOR YOUR CONCERN! We've talked things out, and I believe this has made us understand each other a little better. =)
Last but not least - I'm super late - I'm on Class95's blind dates!
How cool is that? Well, ignore that very arrogant little description of myself, I don't know what I was thinking when I wrote that. =)
If you want to have a fully paid dinner with me (shiok, they will book the whole place!), please write in to join. I am really not that scary in real life, I promise. Just a wee bit bitchier than most girls maybe... But I am definitely interesting and I think, quite funny. Hahaha...
And also, I will not blog about you if you don't allow me to.
Tata! I'm going out for dinner, and I'm in a mighty good mood! I hope you are too!