View Full Version : computer junk

Alistair Hosie
08-14-2003, 04:53 PM
I can take a joke as well (if not better than the next guy)but whenever I open my computer these days it is full of junk.I have just had five emails two asking me did I want a larger penis and the other one was a letter asking me if I want millions of dollars if I set up an account for some nigerian prince who has six hundred million plus just waiting to get out of his account into mine.I have had so many of these you would not believe me if I told you.THEY ARE NO LONGER AMUSING ,NOT THAT THEY EVER WHERE I have complained till I am blue in the face but this is really becoming too much. What can be done if anything to these nuisances? I am truly becoming very, very, tired of this Alistair

08-14-2003, 05:10 PM
I feel your pain Alistair. I think we're all fed up with it.

"huh? ... a larger one? Gimmeabreak! Hell, I just need more use for the one I have!" http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Alistair Hosie
08-14-2003, 05:20 PM
Lynnl yes it is no longer a joke buddy every five bloomin minutes they are tryin this. Surely they would realise I am not interested and try elsewhere I have complained but it keeps coming I am really fed up with it.Alistair

08-14-2003, 05:41 PM
It is an absolute scourge. There is little that can be done by you.

I run a mail server and I have it configured in special ways. I offer SAFE e-mail for kids. In order for a koolmail.ca mail account to accept mail my mail server rules require that the incoming mail contain a pass phrase in the body of the mail. No pass phrase? Not accepted. This does reduce the utility of e-mail but it totally eliminates junk mail. It does mean that all correspondents must remember to add the pass phrase which is the same for all accounts. The spammers can't deal with this nor can the viruses. Even on the non pass phrase accounts like mine, my server will NOT accept blind addressed mail including BCC or any mail that does not contain a valid user address in the To: field. I then run a strict spam filter and a virus filter. This catches about 95% of spam and so far all viruses. I also have an extensive blocked senders list. Also, since I pick up my mail from my mail server over my LAN my Outlook Express does NOT have permission to access the internet.

BTW, my bullet proof server is getting hit about once per minute by MSBLASTER the last two days, to zero effect. I laugh in the face of danger! HA.

I'm afraid this is not of much help to you but it is possible to deal with it to a large degree. The pass phrase idea or something similar is beginning to gain some traction in the IT world. We'll see what happens but something must and will be done.

[This message has been edited by Evan (edited 08-14-2003).]

Doc Nickel
08-14-2003, 05:55 PM
Alistair- they never "realize you're not interested". Spammers send out literally hundreds of millions of messages daily- billions per week. The vast majority are caught by most decent servers' antispam software, but spammers keep changing tactics and some continues to get through.

They don't care that some is stopped. Even with a .001% response rate a million messages still means thousands of replies, and surely hundreds of sales. And when it costs a thousandth of a cent or less per message sent, the cost/benefit ratiois staggering.

Obviously, spam works. It costs money and time and considerable effort to send- if it didn't have a good success rate, they wouldn't be doing it.

It's like infomercials- sure, the vast majority of us laugh at the idiots buying low-grade car polish 'cause some schmuck lit some lighter fluid on the hood and it didn't damage anything, but the fact is, they work, They sell junk faster than K-Mart on a buy-one-get-one-free day.

Worse, even anti-spam legislation won't work- many spammers are overseas, or run through overseas servers. Think a few US Laws will stop some dude in Libera or Bosnia from taking the buckets of cash the spammers send them?

I know you don't want to hear this, but you're stuck with it. Spam probably ain't gonna go away, we're just going to have to get used to it like we do commercials on TV.


08-14-2003, 06:01 PM
Somebody (I think it was Thrud) suggested a while ago the use of a program called Mailwasher www.mailwashwer.net (http://www.mailwashwer.net) . They have a freeware version that's pretty good. The "Pro" vesion is only a few dollars ($30?). I've been using it for a while now. It doesn't seem to lessen the SPAM to any degree, but it helps one sort it out faster.

08-14-2003, 07:02 PM
In Outlook Express (and others), you can go into <tools> <message rules> <mail> (or equivalent) and set up rules for trashing email you don't want. You can catch obvious words or specific phrases (like larger penis, low interest mortgage, get rich quick, etc.) and have them deleted automatically on receipt.

Not very fancy but a no cost start at managing all that crap.

Another trick for opening potentially dangerous mail (if you are the curious type) is to right click on it, go to properties, then <properties> <details> <message source>. You can then scroll down and read the text content. Even if it contains a virus or reference to a viral attachment, it can't do any harm. This also assumes that you already have the preview pane disabled.


08-14-2003, 07:18 PM
One note. If you add something to your blocked senders list, say sweety@hotpants.com and you never want mail from not just sweety but anyone at hotpants.com, then modify the entry so it reads just hotpants.com . That way it will block all mail from that domain. It is a standard trick for spammers to change the name before the @ on every mail they send.

BTW, How is an erect ***** like a computer? They both stay up if you don't **** with it.

08-14-2003, 08:15 PM
Change your email. I have two email acounts. One is for people I know and the other is for everything else. I put the second one on forms and whatnot. That one has an average of 25 spam hits every day.My blocked mail list is full with porno domain names.They must get new domains every month and resend everything every month!

08-14-2003, 08:53 PM
I have mentioned this before, but I NEVER get ANY spam on any of my accounts. No filters or anything. Change your email address to something long that doesn't sound like a name. I have been told that is why I don't get them, I use my company name: TotalPerformanceSpecialties@.

08-14-2003, 08:59 PM

I suspect it is only the length that does the trick. Spammers use random name generators to create email addresses (known as "mail bombing") as well as harvested adresses (scraped from web pages, greeting card sites etc) but they probably limit the length to something like 12 or so characters for speed and because not many people have such long addresses as yours.

08-14-2003, 09:33 PM
I don't know if its just me but in four years I never got a single piece of spam mail until I used Netscape,after that I got five and six a day, so I quit using it and problem is almost gone I just get 1 or 2 a week now,who knows?
I also use a neat trick to prevent a e-mail virus or worm from using my adress book to travel,All I did was add a number one to all the adresses in my adress book,if the virus or worm tries to send its self to someone in my book with the extra digit the mail will be returned,the only thing you have to remember is before you send mail to anyone you have to remove the extra number first,I had a worm about six monthes ago and it worked like a champ,I still had a sick machine,but at least it didn't cough on anybody elses http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

08-14-2003, 11:32 PM

Unfortunately, most viruses these days will hunt down e-mail addresses from anywhere they can be found on your computer. Cached web pages in the temporary internet files, documents, and anywhere else they might exist on your machine. If your computer caught a cold, it most certainly did cough on someone.

08-14-2003, 11:40 PM
Microsoft just dropped support for Outlook.

I don't get those adds anymore - our IP filters them for us and files them in the "round file".

I have relayed maybe a hundred different "Nigerian" letters to the RCMP and the AFL (African Fraud Letter) site in Toronto.

Damn, I never get the penis ones - they must know it died of disinterest. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

[This message has been edited by Thrud (edited 08-14-2003).]

08-14-2003, 11:50 PM
I have 3 e-mail accounts. Two get spam and one gets none. The one that doesn't get any is one that is madeup of a word that is not in the dictionary and a number, total of 11 charactors. I delete any message that is not from someone that I recognize their address. If it has no subject, auto delete even if it is from someone I know. There is a virus out there now that looks like it is being sent by your e-mail administrator. Be careful opening anything from someone claiming to be the administrator.


08-15-2003, 01:00 AM

I'm not one for pitching other companies' products but Earthlink's new online email allows you to set the email addresses from which you'll accept messages. You can enable a few levels of security - I use it at the max.

All other email is held temporarily should you wish to check it out. Those that have been already classified as spam sit in one junk folder that doesn't count against your email storage... these are usually the mass mailings.

The 2nd class screened out are received emails not matching your list of acceptable correspondents. These will either be associates that seldom write or those junk mails sent with one recipient at a time.

The second class of junk email is special in two ways. (1) Each email is automatically replied with a message informing them that they are not on the receipt list and should contact you by other means should their inclusion be appropriate. I like this because it informs some spammers that this email is hereafter unproductive.

This system works well for me because I have all my non-business emails sent to various free throw-away accounts like mail.yahoo.com.

My yahoo accounts automatically send anything that is not designated as valid traffic to the trash bin. I read the subjects of the trash bin listing and seldom is it anything of value. Those exceptions and otherwise validated traffic are forwarded as attactments to my earthlink email account. As these free throw-away accounts are the only ones accepted by its authentication list, I'm assured that the earthlink account has no spam nor last-minute virus email. This allows me to go online and empty that account of prefiltered email with my questionable version of MicroSoft Outlook. Its able to grab email and get offline assured of no mischief email getting through that might exploit the daily security breaches of MicroSoft programming.

08-15-2003, 01:24 AM
Evan,my old man ran mainframes for 32 years,he gave me one excellent piece of advice-do not ever keep anything important on a computer! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif
Temp files dump at log off,others e-mail adresses only appear in Outlook,it may not protect me from all the latest vodoo,but it takes care of 99%.
Plus if I ever catch or run into anyone who would be stupid enough to admit to wrighting a virus,spyware or other "malicious code"I would instantly kill them,slowly though they should suffer http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

p.s.I bought and paid for my software all legal like and I never ever got any support from MS,so I geuss I won't miss what I never had http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//frown.gif
Can't complain about the people at Dell though,they have always been very helpful,where MS has that special kind of KMA attitude that they are famous for http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//mad.gif

[This message has been edited by wierdscience (edited 08-15-2003).]