September 12th, 2002

southpark

Accountable E-mail?

Here's my idea for combating unsolicited e-mail... Require that someone is accountable for any message before it is delivered. It could be implemented at the ISP mail server level, checking for accountability before passing an e-mail to its recipient user within the ISP. (Since spammers can use their own mail servers, it would be pointless to implement this at the originating mail server, which is why it should be done at the final one instead.) If the accountability field is not filled in, so the message can't be traced back to a human sender, the final mail server can refuse to deliver it to its recipient's mailbox. Hopefully, knowing this, spammers will either quit spamming since it's a waste of time, or be forced to take accountability for their messages, which would make it easier to enforce laws we might want to make, such as a no-spam list similar to the no-call list that telemarketers must adhere to or face hefty fines.

Maybe I'm just overreacting because I'm particularly annoyed by spam at the moment, but I have to think there's SOMEthing we can do.

I already have a decent mail filter in place that does a pretty good job of throwing unwanted mail into one place where I can quickly review the subjects/senders and delete them without even opening them. I wish there was some way to let the senders know that their messages aren't reaching human eyes at my addresses so they'll stop trying. But of course since it costs them nothing, they don't care. Oh well.

That's another thing that bugs me - I say "addresses" above because I have several e-mail accounts that all forward to one place. So sometimes I'll get spam addressed to one address, but the only removal method they provide is by sending a blank e-mail to them, where the "From:" will be a different address than the one they spammed. So what will they do when they receive a removal request for an address that isn't in their list? They'll add it to their list and start spamming it, no doubt. Some probably even do that for removal requests from addresses that ARE in their lists.

So anyway, for those I sometimes telnet to my ISP's mail server and send a message by hand where I can specify the From: address to match the one they spammed. At least, when the message appears to be from a reputable spammer (now THERE'S an oxymoron) who might honor the removal request.

But like all other anti-spam ideas so far, I suppose this won't work unless all the VALID senders make a change to the way they send their mail as well. What we really need is something (other than a filter, which isn't infallible) that deters spammers without any action on behalf of valid senders, or the recipients for that matter.

I guess if there was an easy answer, it would've been found by now.

And why the HELL do I keep getting duplicate spam messages through my RIT addresses? That started back in '98 or '99 and hasn't stopped ever since. Not all, but some messages come through as two copies of the exact same message. Same date, time, message ID, everything. Obviously a server glitch of some sort. Oh well, it makes the spam easy to identify. If I see two identical ones, I delete 'em both.
  • Current Mood
    annoyed annoyed
digimind

Freaky...

Yesterday for some reason my roomies were watching Baywatch out in the living room. Or at least, I could hear the theme song playing. That reminded me that at one time, I used to know how to play that piano solo. I thought it was the coolest thing, so I learned it by ear.

I guess it's no wonder that I've forgotten it, seeing as I never had the guts to play it for anyone lest they pound me into a pulp. lol
  • Current Mood
    weird weird
digimind

E-ZPass

Well, E-ZPass refunded my $46.85 in incorrect tolls as I requested, but not before they let more incorrect tolls drop my balance down below the replenishment mark, so another $25 got added to my account unnecessarily. Last time I tried to get them to reverse a replenishment, I ended up contesting the charge with Discover, who investigated and concluded that the charge was authorized. I guess I'll never get this money back until I close my E-ZPass account, because I certainly won't spend that much in tolls... unless I get another job down the thruway.
  • Current Mood
    annoyed annoyed
digimind

Duplicate Spams

I just got a duplicate. Here are the headers side-by-side. I mangled my own addresses to prevent harvesting here.

Message 1Message 2
Return-path: <savings@offers.homesavingsplace.com>
Received: from ms-mta-01 (ms-mta-01-mss [10.10.4.5]) by ms-mss-01.nyroc.rr.com
(Netscape Messaging Server 6.0 (built Feb 15 2002))
with ESMTP id <0H2C00B2SUX1CD@ms-mss-01.nyroc.rr.com> for
thwack%rochester.rr.com@ims-ms-daemon (ORCPT thwackatrochester.rr.com); Thu,
12 Sep 2002 22:29:26 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from nymx01.mgw.rr.com (nymx01.mgw.rr.com [24.92.226.31])
by ms-mta-01.nyroc.rr.com (Netscape Messaging Server 6.0 (built Feb 15 2002))
with ESMTP id <0H2C00B49UWVIS@ms-mta-01.nyroc.rr.com> for
thwackatrochester.rr.com (ORCPT thwackatrochester.rr.com); Thu,
12 Sep 2002 22:29:25 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from vms1.rit.edu (vms1.isc.rit.edu [129.21.3.8])
by nymx01.mgw.rr.com (8.12.5/8.12.5) with ESMTP id g8CI9tWb003099 for
[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<thwack<b>') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

I just got a duplicate. Here are the headers side-by-side. I mangled my own addresses to prevent harvesting here.

<table><tr><th>Message 1</th><th>Message 2</th></tr>
<tr><td>Return-path: <savings@offers.homesavingsplace.com>
Received: from ms-mta-01 (ms-mta-01-mss [10.10.4.5]) by ms-mss-01.nyroc.rr.com
(Netscape Messaging Server 6.0 (built Feb 15 2002))
with ESMTP id <0H2C00B2SUX1CD@ms-mss-01.nyroc.rr.com> for
thwack%rochester.rr.com@ims-ms-daemon (ORCPT thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com); Thu,
12 Sep 2002 22:29:26 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from nymx01.mgw.rr.com (nymx01.mgw.rr.com [24.92.226.31])
by ms-mta-01.nyroc.rr.com (Netscape Messaging Server 6.0 (built Feb 15 2002))
with ESMTP id <0H2C00B49UWVIS@ms-mta-01.nyroc.rr.com> for
thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com (ORCPT thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com); Thu,
12 Sep 2002 22:29:25 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from vms1.rit.edu (vms1.isc.rit.edu [129.21.3.8])
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<thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com>; Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:09:55 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from ritvax.isc.rit.edu by ritvax.isc.rit.edu (PMDF V5.2-32 #40294)
id <01KMEZLFKB82NDMFRD@ritvax.isc.rit.edu> for thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com
(ORCPT rfc822;djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.rit.edu); Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:09:28 -0400 (EDT)
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<djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.isc.rit.edu>; Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:06:00 -0400 (EDT)
Date: Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:06:00 -0400 (EDT)
From: "HomeSavingsPlace.com" <savings@offers.homesavingsplace.com>
Subject: Save $100's, maybe $1,000's with No Lender's Fees. Click here!
To: djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.rit.edu
Message-id: <Kilauea268-23-14682655-0@flonetwork.com>
X-VMS-To: IN%"djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.isc.rit.edu"
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
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</td><td>Return-path: <savings@offers.homesavingsplace.com>
Received: from ms-mta-01 (ms-mta-01-mss [10.10.4.5]) by ms-mss-01.nyroc.rr.com
(Netscape Messaging Server 6.0 (built Feb 15 2002))
with ESMTP id <0H2C00B2SUX1CD@ms-mss-01.nyroc.rr.com> for
thwack%rochester.rr.com@ims-ms-daemon (ORCPT thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com); Thu,
12 Sep 2002 22:29:26 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from nymx01.mgw.rr.com (nymx01.mgw.rr.com [24.92.226.31])
by ms-mta-01.nyroc.rr.com (Netscape Messaging Server 6.0 (built Feb 15 2002))
with ESMTP id <0H2C00B49UWVIS@ms-mta-01.nyroc.rr.com> for
thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com (ORCPT thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com); Thu,
12 Sep 2002 22:29:25 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from vms1.rit.edu (vms1.isc.rit.edu [129.21.3.8])
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<thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com>; Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:09:55 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from ritvax.isc.rit.edu by ritvax.isc.rit.edu (PMDF V5.2-32 #40294)
id <01KMEZLFKB82NDMFRD@ritvax.isc.rit.edu> for thwack<b>at</b>rochester.rr.com
(ORCPT rfc822;djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.rit.edu); Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:09:28 -0400 (EDT)
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id <01KMEZKU764WNL4B6B@ritvax.isc.rit.edu> for djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.isc.rit.edu
(ORCPT rfc822;djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.rit.edu); Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:09:10 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from out23smtp5.ddc.dartmail.net ([216.73.88.45])
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with ESMTP id <01KMEZKPP33MNL4CE9@ritvax.isc.rit.edu> for
djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.isc.rit.edu (ORCPT rfc822;djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.rit.edu); Thu,
12 Sep 2002 14:08:56 -0400 (EDT)
Received: from CORE22PUMPER2 (unknown [10.21.11.140])
by out23smtp5.ddc.dartmail.net (Postfix) with SMTP id 2C41B35B433 for
<djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.isc.rit.edu>; Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:06:00 -0400 (EDT)
Date: Thu, 12 Sep 2002 14:06:00 -0400 (EDT)
From: "HomeSavingsPlace.com" <savings@offers.homesavingsplace.com>
Subject: Save $100's, maybe $1,000's with No Lender's Fees. Click here!
To: djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.rit.edu
Message-id: <Kilauea268-23-14682655-0@flonetwork.com>
X-VMS-To: IN%"djp5872<b>at</b>ritvax.isc.rit.edu"
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Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT
</td></tr></table>