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[h-e-w] Cascading spam problem

From: David Vanderschel
Subject: [h-e-w] Cascading spam problem
Date: 19 Dec 2003 11:37:49 -0600

A number of subscribers to this list have had their
accounts suspended on account of "excessive bounces".
Having seen many of these bounce messages myself, I
know that, in most cases, the messages bounced were
bounced because they were identified as spam.
(Correctly.  Indeed, a number of instances of spam
have slipped through recently.)  Unfortunately, some
of these spam filters are bouncing to the list server
and not to the ostensible original sender of the spam.

If your site is bouncing spam to the list, you are
also in danger of being suspended.  Such folks may
wish to try to convince their sysadmins that bouncing
spam is counterproductive.  The From: header and other
headers indentifying a source in most spam are forged,
so bouncing to the 'original' sender may simply be
aggravating some innocent person.  In any case, it
just increases the amount of 'net traffic an instance
of spam produces, and it is virtually certain that no
human ever reads such bounce messages _unless_ they
are directed to the innocent.

Fortunately for this spam-bounce problem, unless your
site has actually blocked (unlikely), any
message notifying you that your account has been
suspended will probably make it through your site's
filter.  If this should happen to you in the future,
you can log in and reenable your account by going

  David V.

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