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  • Greg Q
    replied
    Originally posted by J Tiers
    ... And mentioning that unfortunately it was "standard mandatory policy" at this location that emails with the "fill out form" response had to be added to the blocked sender list.

    After all, you can't argue with "standard mandatory policy". ...
    That is my standard reply to companies (gas, electricity, etc) that cannot help me with a request. I inform them that unforunately it is "our" standard policy that invoices cannot be paid until outstanding requests are actioned in our favor. It's astonishing how often that works. Policy is policy, after all.

    Greg
    Policy and Procedure "R" Us.

    Leave a comment:


  • rkepler
    replied
    Originally posted by J Tiers
    I get very little spam. I would suppose that of the email I get, easily 99% of it is legit, either stuff I/we wanted, or in some cases stuff I no longer have the required password to access the account to turn off.

    But flat-out "spam"? I have not been getting that, and I have NEVER gotten much of that in a dozen years or more of active internet use.
    Then you're either using an unadvertised email address (never appearing in text on the web or in usenet) or you're using an account on a pretty good ISP (my bet is the latter). My gmail account has only seen 2-3 spam messages in the past few years, at the same time I usually see about 25 messages a day that get through my server - most are filtered into a spam bucket and maybe one or 2 a day get into my inbox. For a guy with a mail server at home that's really pretty good.

    Looking at the logs there are about 6-7 thousand attempts to deliver mail that are blocked at the server level using the spamcop.net blacklist and a bunch more that don't get through the greylist (a basic 5 minute timeout for any sender not seen before - most spambots don't have an attention span that long). A *whole* bunch more are blocked from even reaching my server as I block a bunch of IP blocks at the network interface.

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  • J Tiers
    replied
    Spam? WHAT spam?

    I get very little spam. I would suppose that of the email I get, easily 99% of it is legit, either stuff I/we wanted, or in some cases stuff I no longer have the required password to access the account to turn off.

    But flat-out "spam"? I have not been getting that, and I have NEVER gotten much of that in a dozen years or more of active internet use.

    I "helped him out" with a message to the entire email group (via normal group email) detailing the problem and including the message, with the comment that even though public, it was the only way I could get the message to him. And mentioning that unfortunately it was "standard mandatory policy" at this location that emails with the "fill out form" response had to be added to the blocked sender list.

    After all, you can't argue with "standard mandatory policy".

    I found out that even emails through the group fro blocked senders are blocked..... I guess he isn't getting his PDF files any time soon.

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  • 2ManyHobbies
    replied
    Originally posted by danlb
    My opinion... if the ISPs simply blocked OUTGOING tcp packets that spoofed their origin, then the number of worms, viruses and bots would plummet and then we would not have the spam problem.
    They do. Such an activity is viewed as being a good network neighbor. If you have high speed links that source data that isn't yours it makes unbelievable headaches in troubleshooting and gets you isolated from the rest of the network pretty quick.

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  • boaterri
    replied
    Anyone who asks me to send them something and my e-mail bounces with a request for "apply for approved sender status" is free to go directly to H*LL.

    They obviously do not want the item they asked for if they throw up that road block with out "pre approving me".

    Rick

    Leave a comment:


  • Evan
    replied
    My e-mail server doesn't operate on port 25 at all. It uses a much higher port number so spambots that might infect some of my email customers can't find it with a built in SMTP server. I also implement pretty strict filtering. Anything suspicious get wrapped in an attachment and the body of the email is an explanation and analysis from the filter with a paragraph or so from the e-mail text. The customer can then decide if they want to open it.

    Leave a comment:


  • rkepler
    replied
    Originally posted by Evan
    Unfortunately that won't work. The vast majority of spam comes from "bots" which are compromised home machines that act as relays for the spammers. The mail originates from a valid address.
    Actually, some of the larger ISPs are blocking anything from port 25 to block the sending of email from compromised systems.

    http://www.postcastserver.com/help/P..._Blocking.aspx

    So "valid" address or not the traffic gets blocked at the ISP. That does cause more of a load on the ISP as they have to manage a forwarding service that accepts relay from their own IP range and help their customers in sending email but overall it likely eases the burden on their network to not have spambots running on their nets 24/7.

    Leave a comment:


  • Evan
    replied
    if the ISPs simply blocked OUTGOING tcp packets that spoofed their origin, then the number of worms, viruses and bots would plummet and then we would not have the spam problem.
    Unfortunately that won't work. The vast majority of spam comes from "bots" which are compromised home machines that act as relays for the spammers. The mail originates from a valid address.

    Leave a comment:


  • Tait
    replied
    Originally posted by 2ManyHobbies
    I accept any email address to those domains and hand out random addresses as disposable.
    I did this when leaving school - I gave them an address something like XKL[email protected][domain].com. They said it had to be a valid address - I told them it was and that this particular address was being given just to them.

    Oddly, I never got any e-mail sent to it....

    Leave a comment:


  • danlb
    replied
    Originally posted by Evan
    This has been mentioned before; If you run your own mail server make up an address "[email protected]_mail.com". Nobody sends spam to an admin address. I use it and it works.

    Another technique that seems to work is to use a long name like "[email protected]_mail.com" Spammers draw the line somewhere just for formatting reasons on spam lists. I also use that and it works.

    Oh yeah. My mother can barely type my current (very simple) email address. Can you imagine if I gave her something complex like that?

    My opinion... if the ISPs simply blocked OUTGOING tcp packets that spoofed their origin, then the number of worms, viruses and bots would plummet and then we would not have the spam problem.

    Dan

    Leave a comment:


  • 2ManyHobbies
    replied
    I've got more than one registered domain. I accept any email address to those domains and hand out random addresses as disposable. When I start getting spam on one of them I can track it back to the party who sold, lost, or traded my info and flag the related address as a spam trap. Since communications after that are all flagged as spam, it is likely to cost the (ir)responsible party business.

    Leave a comment:


  • Evan
    replied
    This has been mentioned before; If you run your own mail server make up an address "[email protected]_mail.com". Nobody sends spam to an admin address. I use it and it works.

    Another technique that seems to work is to use a long name like "[email protected]_mail.com" Spammers draw the line somewhere just for formatting reasons on spam lists. I also use that and it works.

    Another way it to make up disposable mail addresses at places like Yahoo, Hotmail and Google. Use it for junk accounts like online commenting on news stories and download signups. When it becomes too busy, abandon it. I also do that.

    Leave a comment:


  • danlb
    replied
    Using a whitelist form is just a way to ensure that a human sent the mail as opposed to some form of automated spammer. You have the option of helping the recipient out or not. I don't mind since all the form usually does is ask that you type in a word. It's remarkably effective, since virtually all spam is from faked or stolen addresses. Spam sources never go to the site and add to the whitelist.

    I've had the same email address for close to 20 years. I also get hundreds of spam messages each day. Several hundreds. I don't even bother counting them anymore. Even a Bayesian filter can't keep up with all the interesting ways that the spammers disguise the mail.

    I've finally resorted to filters and a whitelist and a Bayesian filter. Between the 3 techniques I only have about 30 a day that are questionable, and only see a few valid messages a year make it into the trash.

    Dan

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  • Evan
    replied
    Try sending a message without the attachment.

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  • Tait
    replied
    The idea of filling out a form was pretty popular just before Bayesian spam filtering got implemented - most large ISPs have gotten away from it again.

    The whitelist form idea actually works pretty well at reducing spam, but it (as noted) seems to cut down on desired e-mail as well.

    The easiest solution has been mentioned - suggest they get a backup e-mail address such as gmail for these kinds of situations.

    Alternatively, if they e-mail you first, your reply might get through their whitelist filter without additional manual work.

    All parts of the reasons large-scale spam operations get so little love in the professional IT world....

    Leave a comment:

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