Category: Spam

Dec 20 2014

Mailbait Threats

Back in October of 2012 I devised a way of blocking abuse of my mailing list server by detecting mailbait abusers ( offers a ‘service’ to fill your, or someone else, mailbox with unwanted mailing list subscriptions). In June of 2013 I refined the technique. Basically I detected if someone was visiting the mailing list …

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Mar 27 2013

Abuse Addresses

Most ISP’s and network providers have specific email addresses that you can report abuse to. These addresses can be looked up using a whois tool. Recently, I’ve noticed a number of those addresses that just don’t work the way they are supposed to.

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Nov 15 2012

Adding Envelope Sender in sendmail

Fair warning: This post is pretty darn technical and is of little interest to people who don’t muck around with Linux and/or mail servers. Recently I had a problem with someone on a mailing list where they sent obvious spam. The problem was, they were a subscriber to the list and had posted before …

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Oct 25 2012

Blocking Mailbait

Recently I’ve been getting a lot of mail from the feedback loops I subscribe to indicating that someone has gotten a subscription confirmation message and they considered it spam. After digging into my logs I noticed a few things … The subscription requests are being initiated from TOR exit nodes. The web requests that initiate …

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Jul 16 2011

DKIM Rule – SpamAssassin

I put together a new SpamAssassin rule that will help identify spam from spoofed email addresses. Some email providers always sign email with DKIM or DomainKeys … based on this assumption, if you get a message from one of those domains and it isn’t signed, you can assume its more likely to be spam. This …

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Apr 05 2011


By now everyone’s probably heard about the data breach at Epsilon … which resulted in a lot of major eCommerce vendors customers mailing list getting stolen. Personally, I’ve gotten notifications from Chase, Walgreen, Tivo, Best Buy, 1-800-Flowers, and a few others … informing me of the breach and assuring me that no critical information was …

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Jan 05 2011

Spam Retaliation

I’ve got a slightly new policy when it comes to spam. If given the option, I’m going to change my email address in the spammers database to So the next time the spammer tries to send ME junk, they will be reporting themselves to the Federal Trade Commission. Yeah, I know, it won’t do …

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Jun 05 2010

Spam Observations

I’ve noticed an interesting trend in the comment spam I’ve been getting (luckily few of it gets through). There seems to be three basic categories …

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Mar 21 2010

Reporting Spam No More

I’ve decided to stop reporting spam to ISP’s. It just seems like an incredible waste of effort on my part. For YEARS now I’ve used SpamCop to report spam to ISP’s (both the mail provider and related web hosts) and have gotten very few non-automated responses.

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May 10 2009

Yahoo Abuse Feedback Loop

A few days ago I discovered that Yahoo had created a email abuse feedback loop system. Based on my experiences with AOL’s feedback system, I really didn’t have high hopes for Yahoo’s efforts … but decided to give it a shot anyways. I signed up to get abuse reports for messages.   It took …

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