Saturday, January 10, 2015

A Website Stumbled upon Purely by Accident

I discovered the website by clicking on a link on an email I received. The email was titled "Millions of videos, 2 min free previews, blondes, redheads, all ages included!!! Secret videos of everyone you know and want to know inside!!"

I figured there was no harm in following the link, if only out of curiosity. Yup, nothing but sheer curiosity. In any case, my computer was protected by the latest in antivirus software and I had the most recent patches to Internet Explorer installed.

Damnit, it was another bait-and-switch. Again. I ought to have guessed from the preview thumbnails, which were strangely aligned to a more elderly demographic. I thought it was a cookies issue.

Was this a new sort of snuff website? All the 2 minute previews showed were people dying. Of heart attacks, on the surgical table, in their sleep, in car crashes... All manners of strange and unusual deaths were documented and indexed under various search labels.

It got stranger when I selected "My Location!!" from the drop-down search options. The search list was repopulated, and immediately I could tell something unusual was at work. I could recognize some of the locations in the preview thumbnails. There was a video of a recent fatal car crash that happened two blocks away. Another video depicted a failed mugging from about two decades back. Curiously, there was an old black/white GIF of a laborer dying in a construction accident. But one thing was clear- it happened somewhere near me.

Intrigued, I decide to go one step further- I clicked on "Facebook Integration". I thought that there would be no search results, since all my friends were still alive- to my knowledge- but when the search returned over a thousand hits, I knew I had stumbled across something great.

I had discovered a database which stored videos depicting the last two minutes of each person's life.

Then the question struck me- what about myself? How would I die?

Without much hesitation I entered my own name into the search box, with the various search filters to remove others of the same name.

There were no hits. Perhaps the filters were too strict. I relaxed the filters.

No hits again. I performed one more search, this time with no filters.

A few tens of search results were returned. Strangely, none of them were me.

Where was I? I reviewed all the search results, this time searching more closely for a resemblance. Nothing.

What did this mean? Was I... could I be... immortal? A sense of glee welled up inside me.

It was exactly then that a massive message box popped up in the middle of the screen.

"Congratulations for being the 1000,000,000th visitor!!! You have WON a FREE privacy protection package!!! LIFETIME protection, GUARANTEED!!!"

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