Getting too much spam? This is how you combat it. Good article. No provided links, though. Dimwit writers. I found them for you.
Rumors and Comment
Get even with spammers
Charles Pappas, ZDNet Yahoo! Internet Life Sep 16, 1999
My mailbox blew up today. It wasn’t blown up by angry readers filing explosive complaints about recent columns. And I’m not talking about the metal-and-wood unit in front of my house, either. It was my e-mail’s in-box they hit. Who’s they? Spammers. Crammed with more than 1,500 messages, my e-mailbox looked as if it had entered a twilight zone of “Now You Can Laugh at Bad Credit!” and “Drive from LA to NYC for under $3!” pitches.
Even worse, the messages I needed to receive weren’t getting in. An occasional annoyance like this would be bad enough. But the problem is, the problem is getting worse. According to a study conducted by GartnerGroup, a research firm based in Stamford, Connecticut, 90 percent of surfers are spammed on a weekly basis, with 50 percent getting it daily. “The only people who don’t get slammed with all this spam are the absolute newbies,” says Jeff Magill of Bright Light Technologies, a San Francisco firm developing sophisticated antispam defenses for Internet service providers, e-mail hosts, and consumers.
The GartnerGroup study also found that the longer you stick with the same ISP, the more spam you’re going to get. The reason: As you send e-mail, post in newsgroups, fill out registration forms, and so on, your name gets picked up by “spambots”â€”software programs that harvest e-mail addresses like corn in Iowa.
Magill adds that ISPs may spend as much as 3 percent of their gross revenues trying to curtail unsolicited mailâ€”a cost that they can only pass on to you.
Here are ways you can fight back:
Never answer unsolicited e-mail. If you do, the spammer will know that the address works. You’ll be bom barded with even more spam.
Sign up for a free Web-based e-mail account. Use this as your “throwaway” address in situations that could land you on a spammer’s list.
Dump any junk e-mail at the SpamRecycling Center. The center forwards it to the authorities to check it for fraud. When you make your first “deposit,” you can grab a coupon from one of the sponsors of the center (such as Omaha Steaks), and also download a free spam-blocking program from Bright Light.
Let SpamCop track junk e-mail back to its source. You paste the junk e-mail you received into a box, and SpamCop analyzes it to find out who sent it. Then SpamCop shoots a copy to the network administrator of the ISP the spammer is using, with a letter of complaint. (There’s no charge for spam reports, but for a $15 subscription fee, you get an e-mail account with special filters.) Similar tools are available at Junkbusters and the Network Abuse Clearinghouse.
Use the latest spam filters. The ZDNet Software Library offers no-charge demo versions of spam-smackers like Spam Buster and SpamEater Pro. If you’re using AOL, go to Keyword: mail controls to set up a filter.
When you post in newsgroups, put words like NOSPAM in your return address: cbpappas [at] hiwaayNOSPAM [dot] net, for example. People will figure this out when they see it, but spambots won’t.
Ask your ISP how many people it has dedicated to fighting spam. A good rule of thumb is to have one staff member for every 200,000 subscribers.
If possible, use an educational or a government e-mail address (they end in .edu or .gov). Spammers tend to avoid these, according to Spambot beware.
Support such groups as CAUCE,the Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial Email. This all-volunteer alliance helps design and lobby for legislation against spam.
The Federal Trade Commission has set up an online complaint form.