Anti spam suggestions from Internet ScamBusters subscribers
Anti Spam Suggestions
From: Clay French
Subject: Re: stopspam: My revenge - for what it's worth.
Each and every piece of spam I receive through my server, AOL, is forwarded back to Abuse@aol.com and TOSspam@aol.com with a brief note: "More spam I received from AOL."
I believe the businesses we pay fees-for-services to, such as AOL, have the expertise and resources to effectively identify and block spam before it hits our screens. I further believe they could easily program their machines and give us the option to block any message that is not addressed specifically to our screen name. (How many of us are aka "Friend@public.com"?) Worse, I believe our servers are compensated somehow for relaying spam to us as we continue to complain -- and pay them for the spam they relay.
Finally, I believe the first server that beats spam will get my business and ours.
Subject: "Remove" instructions in spam...
From: Bob West
Congratulations on a great Web Site and newsletter! You're performing a terrific service.
It has been widely known that using the "remove" instructions contained in a spam message simply provides spammers with a confirmation that your email address is active. Even though you may be removed from the one list, giving the spammer an appearance of compliance and responsibility, the "removed" address will then be added to many other lists, thereby increasing the volume of spam the user receives.
The recommendation of the major online services as well as major ISPs is that spam victims _not_ use remove instructions contained in spam. Even though some "remove" instructions may be legitimate, it seems that a larger number of spammers are increasing the problem by scamming the removal.
From: "Ken Hale" <email@example.com>
Subject: Simple method for cutting 90% of SPAM traffic.
I am a "NO-SPAM" web marketing consultant with between 180 to 900 no-spam, on-topic posts to news groups made every day. When I first started my business, close to a year ago, I used my own email url for my ad headers.
Within a month I was getting nearly 100 slices of SPAM a day; since I was also dumb enough to take the time to send nice little "remove" messages back to the idiots (hours a day spent doing work that was caused by SPAMMISTS), it was starting to create an economic hardship.
First I thought I got smart by getting a "Hotmail.com" box and putting that url in my headers; all that did was build up an average of 150 SPAM hits on my hotmail.com box per day. I still had to take time to sort through it, though I stopped being dumb enough to send the "remove" messages! (There are now over 100,000 bulk direct email boobs on the web---you will NEVER manage to get off even a small portion of their mailing lists, and lose hundreds of hours making the futile attempt!!)
So I went back to my law enforcement days and thought of the many ways the bad guys used to elude me. Right off the bat I came up with the one that has cut off over 98% of my daily SPAM average, 90% within two weeks of the time I started using it. When a bad guy doesn't want the cops to catch him the first thing he does is change his name and appearance!!!!!!
My ads still go out, though I'm averaging at least 100 more posts a day now, they still carry my advertising message in the same way as before, I still enclose a direct email url for customer contact in the body of the ad, but I rarely receive 10 SPAMS a day at that address ( 1 or 2 at most).
In the header of my ads I list whatever name I wish (often my own or a client's) in the "from" part of the address, but I change the "email" url & the "response" url to a totally unworkable one. (At present I use "NOSPAM@HELLSFIRE.ORGY")
The reason that this works so effectively is that the SPAMMISTS use SPAMBOTS to collect mailing order urls from the post headers, in all news groups, in all areas of the web. If you post to a news group using your own email url in the "Options" or "Preferences" section of your news reader program--YOU WILL BE PICKED UP BY A SPAMBOT, AND YOU WILL BE SPAMMED!!!!!
Bet on it!!!
Another reason it works so effectively is that these idiots who mass-email SPAM are normally too damned lazy to do any work to build their mailing lists. They lay back and let the bots do the work!! The very few who will take the time to open a news post, find the correct email url, and manually put together a mailing link, cc list just might be smart enough to be peddling something worthwhile!!! (THAT'S A LOT OF WORK FOR JUST A FEW URLS A DAY!)
A tool I use to combat SPAMMISTAS is the little freeware program called "Spam Hate", which can be downloaded totally free from an outfit over in England. (Sorry, I can't find their url right now, but it is on most of the search engines.)
This program will analyze the SPAM, isolate all possible sender urls, send flames to them (all the way from legal warnings to really nasty ones of your own choosing--which I use;~), sends SPAM notifications to their ISP, and even notifies an international anti-SPAM organization to go after them! This is all done automatically with just a couple clicks of the mouse button.
Since I started using Spam Hater, only on those who really tee me off, in May I have scored 23 confirmed (by their ISP) kills on off-topic posters to news groups, and 27 confirmed kills on bulk emailers. It works!!
Ken Hale 4th Corner Web Innovations
Email direct to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Web Site Development & Internet Marketing
Design test site= http://www.premier1.net/~kmhale
Subject: Stopping spam
Maybe you have this one already in the fight against spam, but one tactic I've been using is to forward the obvious scams ("stuff envelopes at home for big money") to the attorney general's office in the state the return address shows.
If the U.S. postoffice had an e-mail complaint address, I would forward it to them also.
I'm not sure if they do anything with it, but if enough people complained, they would act a bit faster.
The attorney generals that are on-line can be found at:
Subject: Re: Internet ScamBusters #16
NEVER reply to any spam remove instructions. All this does is confirm your address, which is then sold to other spammers. Suggest that you check other anti-spam sources if you're not convinced.
>Register with "exclude" lists.
They could also be spammers that are looking for addresses in the guise of helping to stop spam.
I've revised my anti-spam section in 'getit4u' umpteen times (and again in 2 weeks) trying to get the best mix of help and correct info. Give it a look - see sig.
-----Bob Appleton email@example.com-----
email4u.txt-getit4u.txt-pix4u.txt-fun4u.txt are found on these fine sites:
From: Steve Wallace <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: comment?
At 09:06 PM 8/4/97 -0400, you wrote:
>We noticed that the amount of spam we were getting at
>was significantly increasing each month. A couple
>of months ago, we were each getting about 30 to 50 spams a
>day! Spams had gone from being a real nuisance to a serious
Absolutely! The problem may grow to the point of driving legitimate commerce from the Net.
>So, we decided to see if we could systematically reduce the
>amount of spam we receive. We starting using the tips we
>And it worked. We've reduced the amount of spam by about 55%.
Some of the tips are good, at least one is very dubious. (more below)
>Register with "exclude" lists. Exclude lists are lists of
>email addresses that more experienced spammers use to filter
>out people who don't want to receive spam. You fill out a
>simple form and then you are excluded from receiving bulk
>email from the companies that have their email address lists
There are a few companies that honor the exclude lists. However, giving an e-mail address to an exclude list usually results in more spam from new sources.
We have created "virgin" addresses (have never existed) and used them *one* time (sent to an exclude list). Within 48 hours, and sometimes within 6 hours, each account was receiving spam. Why?
The "remove" lists become sources of new addresses for other spammers. Rather than use the lists to cull their names, the list-sellers add unmatched names to increase the size (and supposed value) of their lists. As they sell or distribute the lists, the spam multiplies.
Though you acknowledge Cause, your site also does not suggest the (unfortunately) best immediate solution: passage of the Smith Bill, HR 1748. No other workable solution has been presented.
[Editors comments: We have no doubt this happens, and it's a good warning. However, our experience is that the amount of spam -- overall -- has been reduced in spite of this. Glad you raised the point though.]