View Full Version : OT: What can be done about these damn virus emails?
Came back from vacation and had 90 emails of which 20ish were for penis enlargement, online pharmacies or viagra. 50 ish were those damn "MS internet patch" "announcement" "undeliverable mail" etc etc scam emails with virus attachments.
How the hell do you eliminate this garbage using Outlook express? I can't use mail filters, because they spell viagra a million ways, I can't block the "MS internet patch" etc emails because the sender address is never the same........ I'm so SICK OF IT!!
01-08-2004, 07:23 PM
Get a free program called Mailwasher from of the net,
This sits in front of Outlook Express and filters the mail first. You can define whole domains to the kill file like the .ru ones and then keep adding others as they turn up. It's a bit of work at first but it soon pays off.
Soon you can just spot the spam from the headers or file size and just either delete it or bounce it back. Either way it gets dropped off your server before you download.
Mailwasher can't open files or attachments without you telling it so there is no way that any scripts can get through.
[This message has been edited by John Stevenson (edited 01-08-2004).]
01-08-2004, 07:23 PM
As are we all.
If people didn't buy the stuff advertised in these messages, they wouldn't send any. So, it must be working. What a sad comment on our world.
If you can figure out a way to solve this situation, you will be a millionaire.
I propose a national register of e-mail addresses of people who do not want messages of this type. The penalty for sending one should be a fee paid by the sender to the reciever of whatever he/she determines his/her time is worth. I think mine is worth about $1,000,000 per minute. No way to avoid paying once the address is registered. If the sender can't be found then you can trace back in the delivery chain and the company that allowed the link to the sender to be broken pays. That'll stop em.
Yea, I know, "Never Happen".
01-08-2004, 07:24 PM
Someone trying to tell you something??
Set up a yahoo account.You can easily block these out.
DO NOT USE NORTON.I put it on my system and it caused nothing only problems.No way to get it off.
I have mentioned my unintentional spam blocking technique before: My email address is 27 characters long and I never, and I mean NEVER, get spam of any kind. No kidding.
01-08-2004, 09:59 PM
YAHOO blocks about 90%, or more.
Dumps them into a bulk mail file, wherre you may look thru them, if you choose to.
01-08-2004, 10:11 PM
I wish there was a way to block headers which indicate a "misconfigured sender". These seem to account for over 90% of the garbage I receive.
01-08-2004, 10:51 PM
I have a dial up connection. I was getting 50-60 spam messages a day. When I contacted my Internet provider to change my e-mail address, they suggested I use their spam program to screen my mail. Now I get a couple or less. Many days, none.
I would like to see more federal regulations on spam, though. It must be using a lot of resources that could be used for better things. Gerry
01-09-2004, 06:49 AM
You guys would be astounded if the collective ISPs and major backbone providers shut off their filtering for a single day.
You think forty or fifty a day is a lot? If they didn't already have multiple filtering algorithms, you'd probably see two or three hundred a day. AOL filters a collective hundred million or so daily.
The problem is that E-mail is an unsecured text medium. Meaning the only "filtration" that can be done is by one method or another of keyword analysis. (In addition to checcking for various sorts of executable programs, but we're talking spam here, not trojans or virii.)
Recently the spammers picked up on the ultimate trick: Misspelling. The filters can't filter it, since there's so many ways to randomly misspell a word- a hundred times more if you start adding in random commas, hyphens and periods. The better filter systems will be picking up on them sooner or later (which is why you're seeing more and more fancifully-spelled words, like M-or.t,gaG-e, but due to the possible combinations, it'll take a while.
The side benefit is that the more stupid net users- those the spams target- will be less and less drawn to the worse-spelled messages, but still, spamming in general is horrendously profitable. The guy arrested a few months back had ten desktop PCs and a fat digital line that might have all cost him a couple thou a month, and he was bragging about raking in $700,000 to $800,000 a year.
People keep saying the Government ought to do something about it, like that "Do Not Call" list. Sorry, ain't gonna happen. Guaranteed. There's only a handful of US-based spammers, and local private groups are already going after them.
Put it this way- you think a US law is going to stop the Nigerians from sending you another copy of a widely-known scam that dates back to a hundred years before the Spanish-American War? Get real! Half your spam is already either originally from or reflected off a China-based server farm, a small fraction comes from within the US, and the rest comes from all across the globe- Indonesia, Vietnam, Belgium, Thailand, Russia, Kzakhstan (or however that's spelled) even Norway, Britian and Canada.
A US law would have utterly no meaning, and a list like a DoNotCall would be nothing more than a "come spam me some more!" list.
No, the only "fix" will be a major change in the design of E-mail. Not only a fundamental change in the way it's handled (how the computer encodes it and transmits it, as well as how the servers route it) but how it's used as well, possibly something like the AOL system where you can tell it to not allow anything except addresses you specifically enable.
But the real fix will be a change in the way the servers route it and handle it- each message would, for example, be given a non-spoofable router ID of some sort, or some manner of "authenticator". Though, naturally, the spammers will find a way around those too, eventually.
A far better fix, however, would be to simply get people to stop buying the crap the spams advertise! The Nigerian scam STILL bilks people out of millions per year, men with low self-esteem buy up the dick potions by the metric trainload, and that doesn't even count the guys hawking "can't lose" Ebay software, "hot stock picks", the Paris Hilton tape, sunglasses, discount cigarettes, and all the other crap.
Somebody is buying this stuff. Stop them and you'll stop your spammers.
01-09-2004, 08:34 AM
Actually, the government has taken/is taking action. Whether it will be effective or not is another matter entirely.
01-09-2004, 09:57 AM
Pulling the perpetrator through his car window and smashing his nose would be one solution.
But then, I am not a violent man.
I replaced a hard drive recently. Not sure if a virus was the cause or not but it cost me money.
Connection to the internet without a firewall is like unprotected sex.. You might be allright?
01-09-2004, 10:27 AM
I just got on some ones email list, the dickhead sent out hundreds of emails like billh3, billh4.....billh308 Until it worked with me, then I got onto his mail list. This really ticks me off, I am so carefull to not get on any lists. The person needs to be dragged out by their hair and shot in the head.
01-09-2004, 10:30 AM
"Put it this way- you think a US law is going to stop the Nigerians from sending you another copy of a widely-known scam that dates back to a hundred years before the Spanish-American War? "
100 years ago? Wow! Doc, are you saying Al Gore didn't invent the Internet?
01-09-2004, 04:54 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by debequem:
100 years ago? Wow! Doc, are you saying Al Gore didn't invent the Internet?</font>
-It's older than that. It used to be called the Spanish Prisoner scam, and versions may date back to the 15th century.
The original style was where the scammer got in touch with someone in a wealthy city, and told him of his boss, a wealthy duke/count/nobleman/merchant who was being held in some faraway land by certain persons. (Angry king, vindictive brother, neighboring duke, merchant's group, ad nauseum.)
The prisoner, did I mention how wealthy he was? Anyway, he could pay for his bail/fines/legal fees/tithe/ransom if he could just access his own money. Alas, he could not. So he- the scammer, posing as the nobleman's servant- was looking for a kind soul to pay the fees or fines or ransoms, and when the prisoner was released, he would be more than happy to repay those fees ten times over.
Naturally, there was no prisoner, and the "faraway land" was further than an easy trek from wherever they were at the moment. (Spain was popular in the areas of France and Britain- it was known to be wealthy with plenty of noblemen, but many months' travel away. Thus the Spanish Prisoner.)
Any money paid simply went into the scammers pocket and was spent on ale and whores (or whatever.) The scammer would return to the generous soul time and again, saying the jailers had increased their ransom, or the King's lawyers had added another fee, or the Prisoner had yet again insulted the Duke, who then imposed another penalty.
Etcetera and so forth.
They think that it transformed into the "modern" version we see now- a letter talking about money to be transferred- roughly the turn of the century, when physical mail was just getting reasonably widespread, and banks began to communicate with each other via telegraph.
It then morphed into the Nigerian version we see today, about thirty years ago, and was becoming a major issue ten years ago. (My brother got a physical letter, signed, notarized and sealed, with a Nigerian postmark, back in 1992.) It made the leap to E-mail about '96, and it caught like wildfire then- being able to reach millions of prospective suckers.
Pyramid schemes have been around almost as long.
01-09-2004, 05:37 PM
The following appeared in our weekly newsletter at work, recommended by one of the software guys.
Unfortunately, it doesn't work with Outlook Express, but applies to other Outlook versions. I haven't tried it myself, as I use OE.
"Receiving Annoying SPAM?
If you’ve been receiving SPAM and want to cull it from your good mail, here is a great piece of free software to do it.
Go to http://spambayes.sourceforge.net/windows.html and download the appropriate version for your computer.
Once installed it will create two new folders in Outlook where it will send any suspected SPAM to one and any that it is sure of to the other. All good mail goes to your inbox as normal. Every now and again it will be wrong in where it sends mail so you should quickly check the folders and then move wrongly placed e-mail to the correct folder. Moving the mail teaches the program so that it increases in accuracy."
I don't understand your comment about Norton. Norton AntiViris works fine for me (and no doubt for a few million others)
[This message has been edited by Peter S (edited 01-09-2004).]
01-09-2004, 07:31 PM
I don't understand your comment about Norton. Norton AntiViris works fine for me (and no doubt for a few million others)"
May have installed it wrong,but doubt it.
Slowed everything down,could no longer use internet banking etc.
Had to disable it
Now using Zonealarm with no problems
01-09-2004, 10:12 PM
putting filters on your hotmail account works too. Mine looks for "penis" and "money" If anyone writes me with that in the letter, well it ends up in the junk folder.
Friends who send me jokes everyday get blocked. Sorry, just cleaning up and saving time. I sometimes make money with my pc.
01-09-2004, 10:42 PM
I am speaking out to my ISP.
They wanted me to go to high Speed, and I said "NO, For what? More garbage?...You guys shut of the crud i get and i will consider it"
Some people in the ISP industry sell your name..I know it..it has happened to me..
My wife has a secret email address and only a few know it and it is never used for surfing, yet she gets more xxxxx than imaginable...The ISP's say it's the websites you visit...bogus !
SOMEDAY.. the ISP's will stop and see that they have 300 % more servers than they need,customers are leaving them, and that all the Spam is tying up bandwidth...then something will be done..but not till it hurts...in the mean time they get 30-50 bucks a month from us for our stupidity
The spammers don't need to know your email address. They "mail bomb" the ISP using every possible combination of known email addresses. They will use every known name and then use permutations of first and last name, then first initial and last, then name plus 1 through 99, then name underscore name, then... you get the idea. I have an email address that I never use and no one knows but me and the ISP (the telephone company) and I get spam on it. The phone company wouldn't dare give out email addresses, if they did they would be fined millions of $$$$.
The only solution to the problem is a very difficult one to implement. It will mean a complete change to the protocols. Laws won't do it. Pressure on the ISPs won't do it. The email system will have to be changed so that email will have to be verified as originating from a particular sender.
Another solution is to charge for sending an email. Would you mind if it cost one cent to send an email? Probably not. Would a spammer who sends a million in a day? Probably stop him dead in his tracks.