[Dshield] Re: Spam Email is there a solution "finally"?

John Groseclose iain at caradoc.org
Thu Dec 18 23:16:51 GMT 2003

Doug White writes: 

> I guess the Challenge/Response systems are OK, but as Johann mentioned, the user
> should go in and make sure he has whitelisted the list servers that are
> subscribed to. 
> I know when I receive one of those C/R emails after posting to a list server, I
> do not click on the confirmation but usually just discard the email

I'm a subscriber on an awful lot of lists. 

1) I get "vacation" notices from subscribers to these lists when I post.
2) I get "challenge" e-mail from subscribers to these lists when I post.
3) I get "bounces" to posts from these lists from addresses that subscribed, 
then the account that subscribed disappears.
4) I've been added to "bad e-mail sender" lists because the originally 
subscribed address was converted into a spamtrap address without 
unsubscribing from a list. 

There is absolutely no excuse for anyone to send a "vacation" notice in 
reply to a message from an e-mail list. In fact, "vacation" notices that 
transit the internet in general are a very bad idea - they notify the sender 
that if something were to happen with the recipient's accounts, nothing will 
be noticed for some time. Also, "vacation" notices will automatically tell a 
spammer that it's a live address, assuming that the sending address is in 
fact valid. "Vacation" notices, I think, represent not just an annoyance, 
but a very real security risk. Each of the places I've worked in the last 
two years have had policies in place that "vacation" notices will only be 
sent in response to e-mail from within the network, and will never be sent 

Sending a "challenge" response to a list posting is just stupid and 
aggravating. There's no reason to challenge any post from a list to which 
you subscribed. 

Points 3 and 4 are more list-management related than anything else, but I'd 
think it's just polite to unsubscribe from your lists before migrating an 
account or address. I know *I* have done this in the past, and simply 
resubscribed to the lists from the new address. I missed one list simply 
because it only gets traffic about three months out of the year, and I 
simply hadn't received anything from it in the six months prior to the 
address change. 

And it seems I just got a crapload of "mail rejected" notices in my inbox 
from my last post to this list... all from the same address, too.

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