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About tonyhj

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  • Birthday 04/29/1941

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    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
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  1. tonyhj

    Does Spamcop even help the problem?

    Well! Truly helpful answers from Steve T. (turetzsr) and from Miss Betsy. I thought "yourbuddy" had waved goodbye, but he/she weighed in, and folks responded to his entries with remarks that seem laden with old history, and frankly I couldn't understand them. However, in my quest for understanding, and because of today's postings, I now gather that it is the single offending IP address that is blocked, not a whole set of them, and once a non-mole reports the address, those who send from it get a message to the effect that the IP is a source of spam. I also think I saw somewhere that the blocking only lasts 48 hours! (which, if true, amazes me for its shortness of duration - I wonder how effective it can be!). QUOTE (turetzsr [at] Apr 26 2004, 06:21 PM) Sorry about that! I did try too many perspectives to come at my example. I began by speculating about what might happen were I myself ever to unwittingly send email from a compromised IP address, but then I thought of my friend's email to me which had been put into my "held mail" box, and from then on my remarks were from the perspective of the recipient of good email from a bad IP address (this last phrase could not have been written by me this morning, because only now do I understand that it is the IP address, not the entire ISP that is blocked). I would like to continue thinking about my friend's email for a minute: In our city, there are only two internet service providers for the general client (there are others for businesses, I believe, but not very many). I belong to one, and my friend belongs to the other. His email was identified as possible spam by SpamCop and put in my "held mail" folder. I don't think he ever knew his message was thought to be from a spammer. I certainly didn't tell him (perhaps I should have). I simply whitelisted his email address and went on my merry way. Two days later an email to me from another friend - a member of my own ISP - was also put into my "held mail" folder. Again, I said nothing, whitelisted the sender, and carried on with my life. All this says to me that our city's two main ISP's are having some of their auto-generated IP addresses hijacked. Perhaps we - my correspondents and I - should be alerting these two fairly big companies that this is happening. If readers wish to comment in the helpful vein I have been seeing in this forum, please do. Meanwhile, thanks again to Miss Betsy, Steve "turetzsr" T., Stephen Underwood, dra007, and Wazoo, for their informative replies. I think I am understanding things just a bit better. My, but it's complicated! Tony ps. and thanks, turetzsr, for the link to the Net Abuse Jargon dictionary! T.
  2. tonyhj

    Does Spamcop even help the problem?

    I'm one of those who gets 100+ spams per day. Currently two or three of them get through SpamCop's filters, and when I report them, I feel I'm doing some good, for - rightly or wrongly - I assume I'm alerting somebody to a new spammer. Maybe I'm only alerting a machine, but I get satisfaction from thinking that the reporting of spam results in the discouraging of spammers. Reading the posts in this forum undermines this satisfaction a little. There are certainly people who think SpamCop is not doing a good job, but their arguments are far too technical for me. So let me invite you to review the following paragraphs: When an item of spam is reported, I believe the "IP address" (a bunch of numbers separated by dots) goes onto some kind of blacklist. There is, I believe, an "IP host" involved (a business or organization which "owns" a series of IP addresses) and sometimes - when is not always clear - all mail emanating from all IP addresses owned by that host are then blacklisted. The effect of a blacklist is not clear to me either. If the IP from which I send my email is part of a blacklisted host, sometimes I might never know. My email disappears into the ether, and only when I meet the recipient on the street and say "Did you get my email?" that it turns out he never got it. For example, this happened to me recently with respect to incoming mail from a friend (you can view my befuddled post in the help forum under Will anyone help me understand this header?) where SpamCop defined his email as spam and put it in "Held Mail." He never knew his outgoing mail was treated that way. Only if my ISP (look at me! Forced to use all these dratted initials just like a tech-head!) sends him a message - and not all do - saying "Your message has been blocked as spam" would he become aware of his ISP's blacklisted status. I might be missing something here. My status with SpamCop is as a "mole." It's as if I "whisper" the IP addresses of my spam to SpamCop, and they are placed on a blacklist without any notice to their administrators. Maybe if I were the other kind of SpamCop customer, notices would go out to all administrators of all IP addresses that send me what I declare to be spam. But that makes me wonder whether being a "mole" is doing more harm than good! Meanwhile, other posts in this forum suggest that spammer technology has reached the point where they can "fake" an IP address - or is it that they can hijack someone else's computer from a remote location and literally send out their emails from it? Blacklisting that computer's IP - provided notice is sent to their administrator - would thus get them to quickly work to get a defence against hijacking. Again, I wonder if my "mole" status prevents this worthy process from happening? Congratulations for reading this far! Now, the acid test: I want to compliment Miss Betsy. Her posts are invariably reasoned, calm, and written in ordinary language. Some of the other volunteers use a lot of technical jargon, and I don't understand what they are saying. And, it is also true that some volunteers use snappy remarks that can intimidate the newbie. The acid test is, I sincerely hope that a person reading this and wishing to help me understand things more fully, will be able to respond with the patience and tone Miss Betsy commonly uses. There are others who use that tone - but she stands out. I have never been rudely treated in this forum (others have been in my opinion), but I have sometimes been totally mystified by jargonese in what are clearly intended to be helpful answers to my questions. Stephen Underwood Posted: Apr 21 2004, 07:55 AM Like Stephen Underwood (another courteous person, I might add), I have used my email address for 9+ years, and have correspondents from all over the world. I cannot possibly notify them all should I change my address in an attempt to defeat spammers. I'd rather pay SpamCop to help me sort through the 100+ items of spam per day. Also, like Stephen, I hope I'm doing something to stop, or at least bother, the spammers. I'm reading and replying in this topic because I need some reassurance that I really am helping to stop or bother them. Finally. I have a very full life, and only visit the forum in rare moments of free time - once every couple of weeks. I visit because I'm curious about this very topic - does SpamCop even help??? Thanks for going all the way to the bottom of this post! You're a trooper! Tony
  3. Now there's an answer that makes sense to me! I have heard that my friend's ISP had been having some trouble with viruses. They may also have a spammer operating from their addresses. So, my friend gets scooped up and blacklisted in the process. Sad. But makes sense. Thank you.
  4. Sure! Whatever you say! I mean, those letters and numbers are a complete mystery to me! What on earth do these things tell you?? Second, when you "parsed" the headers, did the email get reported as spam? I noticed the disquieting phrase, "Yum, this spam is fresh!" Third, my ignorance remains as to why "spamhaus" wanted to block that email. Fourth, to Wazoo - thanks for the warning, I edited the email addresses out as you suggest. I hope successfully. I presume that all the thousands of parsed reports that SpamCop generates are not picked up by Google, even if these discussion boards are...?
  5. Looking through my Held Mail today, I spotted a personal email from a friend. I whitelisted it, reported the rest, and went on to answer the email. But I'm a curious sort of newbie, and wonder if anyone has the time or inclination to help me parse the header to see what spamhaus or SpamCop found problematic. Here are the long headers: Tony
  6. I've read "How can I unsend a report" and I still need help. My status with SpamCop is the "mole" kind, so I believe that when I accidentally reported "good" mail the sender's isp was not notified. (In fact, it was really very good mail! I have become too comfortable with SpamCop's accuracy and was no longer checking before reporting, and after hitting "report" my eye spotted the good email, and my heart sank. I'd hate to have that sender blacklisted!). As far as I know, the only place my report went was "mole[at]devnull.spamcop.net." All I have done so far is retrieve the email from trash, send it to "held mail" and from there I "whitelisted" the sender. Now what? A note to "mole[at]devnull.spamcop.net" with the ID# of the report? A note to the sender with an apology for [unbeknownst to him] blackballing his honest email? Please help. Tony HJ - sick of spam and happy with SpamCop
  7. I was just about to post a [to me] very simple comment, when I came across this note from Brad Fuller. Great! His question was what I wanted to ask, too! And the answers - from Jeff G and Jeff T - were interesting. As a newbie, I have no idea whether the volume of spam I am experiencing is "normal" or unusual. Brad gets 100 items of spam a day. So do I. Maybe I'm normal, then - even though no-one in my daily, non-electron world gets that many. This weekend, SpamCop caught 270 spam emails for me, but 15 more unfortunately leaked through. I was upset, but having looked at this forum topic, I guess a 6% leakage is okay - heck, JT found 5% leaking through. Like Scott Heath, originally I was deleting all held mail without reporting, but when I enquired about this process in a newsgroup, was persuaded to report all the held mail anyway. Then I came across the feature of being a "mole" and enabled it - so now my 100+ daily spams are reported to SpamCop but not back to the spammer. Would someone enlighten me as to why being a mole helps rid the world of spam? Tony H-J
  8. A frustrating thing about SpamCop, as I see it, is that anything other than getting your mail "held" is complicated and confusing to the ordinary email user. I joined SpamCop in November 2003, and since then over 8000 items of spam were "held" and then discarded at my request. I was so weary of going through that junk prior to joining that this in itself was a blessed relief. But I like to understand what is happening, and occasionally I had what seemed to me to be a pretty simple, even dumb, question; but, as my question wasn't to be found in the FAQ section, I found that getting an answer was baffling, complex, and tedious. I *got* an answer to my first question, once I found a forum and asked for a direct email reply. but I had to introduce myself to NNTP life even to post the question. I've been on the web for nine years, and up to now had never felt the need of participating in a newsgroup, so I had to find the appropriate client software and learn some basics - in order to answer a simple question. It seemed odd. Having learned to use SpamCop's news server (I'm still not sure what one I found, was it "help" or "mail" or something else, I don't even know how to find out!), I posted a second dumb question, and got a couple of answers from "regulars" which I found helpful. Having learned NNTP basics I began logging on to the newsgroup, and am currently watching all kinds of angst being expressed about this changeover to the webforum format. Obedient to one of the postings there, I came here to this webforum, and, lo!, I have more to learn! The complexity of all this does perplex me. I'll try posting my latest dumb question in a separate posting, and see what happens, but somehow I thought there would be an easier way to get answers to simple questions. Meanwhile, I am very happy to have SpamCop filtering away. Tony H-J