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Spam, Junk Mail, and Advertisments

Revised on

Originally posted on October 18th, 2003

Spam!!! and what you can do about it

Believe it or not, I know people who like junk mail... Honestly, I do. They get a kick out of it. I don't suffer from their delierium myself, but I would bet dollars to donuts that a good number people don't mind replaceing their keyboard every 3 months because of a worn out delete key.

That said, let's see what I can do to help you rid your mailbox of Spam.

There are a tons of options that I'll get into later, but first I thought I would tell you how I do it. I don't get hardly any unwanted email now at all.

Here's how:

If you've had an email account for any amount of time, then chances are you've had to deal with unwanted retarded email. Spam is to email what junkmail is to your mailbox in front of your house.

These people are relentless. The first rule of any received unwanted email is DO NOT REPLY TO IT!!! This is just what they want. A confirmation that you a real live human being reading that stupid message.

Almost all of these email's shuck everything from free credit reports to get rich quick schemes to enlarging bady parts offer a opt out link or web address for you to conveniently have yourself removed from their mailing list. DON'T DO IT!!! NEVER NEVER NEVER respond to one of these automated removals. All this does is confirm to them that you are a real user and your email address really works. This is GOLD to these guys.

Defend and Fortify, then Attack!

Now that that's out of the way, lets get to what you can do to combat it.

You probably already have an email account from your internet provider. If you're not getting any spam now or if the level of spam that you are getting is comfortable then the best thing you can do is stop using it. Only give out this email account to your close friends, family and business associates. Call it your Private/Primary email account. Don't give it out to any websites.

So how then do you subscribe to all those cool emails, newsletters and notices? You start a common email account or Junkmail/Secondary account. You'll use this to register for all those free vacations, email subscriptions, chat rooms, newsletter and the newsgroups. Before you start to freak out, don't. There's no reason to. You can set up one of these very easily with or just to name two. Yahoo is my favorite because Yahoo lets you pull in or download your Yahoo email account into Outlook Express, Outlook 2000, Eudora or any other POP based email package. What's more, you don't have to stop there. You can setup as many email accounts as you wish this way. When the email account starts getting too much spam just delete it or stop using it. I recommend deleting it. Then, the ISP (the company who handled that spam message in the first place) will have to handle the dropped mail account. Hopefully they'll catch on to the spammers IP number and investigate when it starts to get too much traffic.

Now, if you've got the guts... read on...

Kick em when their up, Kick when their down...

If you're like me, you like to screw with these guys. I love giving it back to them. My method of attack is this. I setup an email account on then I respond to these guys inquiring about the product or service. I send a honest legitimate request for information... No sooner than my keyboard keys get cold from typing the message, I'll get a response from the ignat company that sent it. As soon as I have a persons name, phone number (hopefully a 800 number) and an email address I unleash a fury of suspecting attacks on these guys. I've done this for hire on a clients request once because the spammer was targeting his daughters email account on AOL. I almost forgot about the 800 number. If you're lucky enough to get a company with an 800 number that's gold. You did know that they pay about 28 cents for every call over 3 seconds didn't you? Just program your computer to redial a number using the phone dialer program on Windows to redial the number over and over. All you have to do is redial for a weekend, Saturday or Sunday will do, and that cost em around $200 - $300 bucks. Some 800 number companies cut off their number is the level gets too high.

Keep in mind that I'm not recommending that anyone break the law here, just get as much information about them as you can as pass it along to the companies I've suggested and report them.



Spam Fighting Resources

SpamCop will help find the sender of a spam and an address to send a complaint to.
Software tools for tracking spam.

UXN Spam Combat
A collection of anti-spam tools and information.

Fighting E-Mail Spammers
Instructions for telling fake e-mail headers from real ones, and how to find the right person to complain to about spam.

How to Interpret Email Headers
Instructions for interpreting e-mail headers.

Reading Email Headers
An in-depth analysis of how e-mail is sent and how to read its headers.

Downloadable software to trace the sender of an e-mail and locate the spammer's real web site.

Adcomplain Home Page
A Perl script to automate spam complaints.

Anti-spam: AOL edition
A page for AOL users to help combat the threat of spam

Stop Spam FAQ
How to find a spammer and how to respond to spam.

Dealing With Junk Email
Instructions for tracing e-mail headers to locate spammers and their ISPs.

The SPAM-L FAQ Tracking Spam
Instructions for reading e-mail headers and complaining to the spammer's ISP.


Michael Chukov