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Bouncing Spam

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As we all know, unsolicited commercial email (Spam) is a huge problem with on the Internet. People, including myself, deal with this by using filters to attempt to detect spam and prevent it from reaching their mailbox. There are three strategies that people can use to deal with such mail once it has been detected, two of which I consider to be acceptable, and one of which I think should be avoided.

The first strategy is to silently drop spam. This is what one does if one has a truly awesome level of trust in one's spam prevention. Unlikely, but I consider this to be acceptable on the Internet as a whole. The other two strategies are used to deal with imperfect blocking. The good method is to store the spam in a folder of some sort.

A strategy I find unacceptable is to bounce the spam back at the sender. While this seems satisfying in the short run, it faces the problem that the return addresses used by spammers are no longer those of the spammers themselves. Instead, they now use legitimate addresses to send their mail from. When you bounce back spam, you fill these boxes with email.

Recently, one of my addresses has been used as such a source address. (For Russian language spams, making it harder for me to track down the guilty parties.) As a result, I get more bounced spams than direct spam emails. While I have a good filter in place that specifically looks for such bounces, I imagine most people will not be as lucky.

So, if you're going to block spam, either drop it or store it. But don't bounce it back, as you're just sending the problem on to someone else.

- Tom | permalink | changelog | Last updated: 2003-08-03 20:50

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Comments

Posted on Saturday, March 26, 2005 by cosmicbrat:

I get some real goofy nasty SPAM's, and Spoofs, on occasion... and two to ten mindless nigerian and netherland's 419's per week... I usually forward it all to abuse@ their providers...Too few do this... It forces them to move to other providers... and keeps them out of the loop for a few hours, or days... but doesn't really give those petty criminal parasitic senders a meaningful Strong Message that I'm not interested... They really need an army boot full-force kick to the throat... They are representative of the aggressive parasites that damage our World Internet's love and respect, and dignity... They don't deserve Any gentleness nor consideration nor respect...

If I send the 419'er a vicious note, the evil little buggers link my address to several shid sites... and I am thus barraged by piles of horrid SPAM's and SCAM's... feeling like the little field mouse that happened to be sleeping under the back end of a cow, when it lifts its tail...

I would really like to give those senders a keen clear powerful THUNDERBIRD super angry screaming message, that says I Really Do Not want their mindless crap ape emails, for all eternity...

I would really like the bounced email to blast out a wicked bird screech, and show an animated huge dinosaur sized bird turd suddenly falling onto the sender's desktop screen, accompanied by extremely nauseous sulfurous "thhhhhht!" and "Splat!" sounds... and splashes of the excrement all over their screen... and a wicked cookie that gives them a little bit of due stress in trying to get the bird poop off their desktop screen... and maybe even a link to a bird poop on-line desktop BP cleaner, but no software download for them... Each time they get a birdie bounce, they must visit the desktop on-line wash...

And maybe a few drops of indelible bird stuff that sticks to the corners of their desktop, and stays there, till they format the HD... That would do it... maybe..

Commenting has been suspended due to spam.