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supaplex

General guidelines for reporting FRESH spam

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I often receive spam complaints from parties other then spamcop. Recently, I've seen multiple reports that are old as a week ago. I know spamcop won't forward complaints for issues that occured more then 48 hours ago (2 days). I'd like to point these people at a spamcop faq on the topic, and suggest they do the same. I searched the help section and FAQs for this, but didn't find anything.

Thanks in advance.

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This is not a rant. I'm interested in seeing a FAQ posted for this topic. I know I see the 'spam must be less then 2 days old' bit every time I submit a spam report. I think others will benifit from the background behind this.

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In the Announcements section here, that change was posted. I also noted that the FAQ was updated, will note again that the 2-day thing is showing on the logged-in page at www.spamcop.net. As this is a "rule" for SpamCop users, I don't believe I would have added to the the version of the FAQ 'here' .. but the FAQ 'here' includes the FAQ you say you searched. Have you taken a look at the single-page access version of the FAQ 'here' ..??

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How and why are reports of older spam a problem for you? Thanks!

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Jeff, My guess (and it is only a guess) is that a whitehat ISP will have taken care of any problem by then and if they have not, then they are probably not going to act on one more complaint received a week later.

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I think the posters here might be missing the point of supaplex's original question.

IIRC, supaplex has no problem at all with Spamcop, (s)he is simply asking for a URL for a page explaining Spamcop's decision to limit reporting to two-day old spam. Apparently, supaplex likes the results of that decision and wants a simple means to spread the good word to other reporting services that are still operating using the "Stale" plan.

(I'd be interested in reading any information on such a URL too. No complaints, just interested in learning more.)

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I don't see where I misunderstood anything. I still point to the posting in the Announcements section and/or the logged-in web-page display notice that talks about both SpamCop and most ISPs agreeing that spam over two days old is useless ... already talked to within this Topic, pointing out that if an ISP was taking care of business, the spew would have already been stopped ... so as in the original query here, a report about a spam item from a week prior is wasting a lot of people's time. The only additional item at this point (without going to the FAQ itself) is adding the URL to this very discussion .....

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This looks like it is close to on topic for my question.

I am wondering if the spammers have a way to alter how old a piece of spam "looks" in your inbox? The reason I say this is because there are times that I am on the computer for several hours, and will have just checked my notification (sits in the task bar - updates every 5 minutes) and 10 minutes or so later, I will find a notification that I have mail. I open my mail and find spam, copy, paste it into spam cop, and find it says that it is two hours old. I have seen up to 5 hours old like this.

To head off some questions - Yes, my system time is correct, I keep it correct with automatic correction (windows xp pro). And, No, I'm not "loosing track of time" - same sit-com on = within the same 30 minute period.

just curious...

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This looks like it is close to on topic for my question.

I am wondering if the spammers have a way to alter how old a piece of spam "looks" in your inbox?  The reason I say this is because there are times that I am on the computer for several hours, and will have just checked my notification (sits in the task bar - updates every 5 minutes) and 10 minutes or so later, I will find a notification that I have mail.  I open my mail and find spam, copy, paste it into spam cop, and find it says that it is two hours old.  I have seen up to 5 hours old like this.

To head off some questions - Yes, my system time is correct, I keep it correct with automatic correction (windows xp pro).  And, No, I'm not "loosing track of time" - same sit-com on = within the same 30 minute period.

just curious...

22895[/snapback]

When you "open your mail", you get all the mail that has been sitting on your ISP's mail server since you went off-line. The date SC looks at is the date in the latest (topmost) "received" line, i.e., the time when your mail server got the spam, not when it delivered it to you. (The latter doesn't appear in the mail.) If you closed your mail client, went to sleep for 8 hours, and then came back, you could get spam that was up to 8 hours old.

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okay, I get that - but the reason I am asking is that I am getting some weird times. NEW mail coming into my box that's reporting that it's 4-8 hours old spam. That's why I'm asking if the spammers are playing with a way to be able to change how the mail server "sees" the age of a piece of mail.

The reason I am asking is - knowing full well that spam Cop is rejecting anything that is 48 hours old, if they can figure out how to make a piece of spam LOOK like it is older than 48 hours old, then it is automatically going to get rejected.

Case in point, I have been online all day - I just deleted a piece of spam and didn't even bother reporting it because it came back as showing as being 44 hours old - now I have been checking my mail all day - and I checked my mail yesterday too - how did I "miss" collecting a piece of mail for 44 hours? Something is fishy - the spammers are up to something.

Garde

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how did I "miss" collecting a piece of mail for 44 hours

Easy, it was not in your inbox, but that does not mean that it was not sitting on some server somewhere. There are reports of messages being released by servers months after being sent because a server was removed from the active set because of a problem after the message was received and not sent until another machine had a problem and that server was reintroduced into the system. It is rare but can happen.

If you had posted a tracking URL for that message, we might have been able to see where the problem was (or what machine may have an incorrect time). Possibly you are correct and the spammers have created a header that spamcop trusts and modified the time, but don't you think they would have modified it to be OVER the 48 hour limit?

As it is most recently explained, Spamcop does not trust the time of the source of the message but it does trust the time from the earliest trusted source. If any of the servers in your mail delivery route either held the message for some reason and/or have their time set incorrectly, that could lead to the problem you are seeing.

Yesterday, netforward.com was down and I was not getting any messages. For a while (probably while they were working on it) they were receiving my messages but not sending them back out. I had several spam that were delayed by a few hours because of it. They were clearly held at netforward for a while. If I can dig up the reports, I will post them (I don't keep an extensive list of the reports I send so it may be gone).

Edited by StevenUnderwood

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okay, I get that - but the reason I am asking is that I am getting some weird times.  NEW mail coming into my box that's reporting that it's 4-8 hours old spam.  That's why I'm asking if the spammers are playing with a way to be able to change how the mail server "sees" the age of a piece of mail. 

The reason I am asking is - knowing full well that spam Cop is rejecting anything that is 48 hours old, if they can figure out how to make a piece of spam LOOK like it is older than 48 hours old, then it is automatically going to get rejected.

Case in point, I have been online all day - I just deleted a piece of spam and didn't even bother reporting it because it came back as showing as being 44 hours old - now I have been checking my mail all day - and I checked my mail yesterday too - how did I "miss" collecting a piece of mail for 44 hours?  Something is fishy - the spammers are up to something.

Garde

23008[/snapback]

The date mentioned in a mail client's list of emails is usually the "Date Sent" -- and a spammer can manipulate that at will: I often see spams with dates in the future.

But the date SC looks at it the date set by the last mail router which saw the mail -- and a spammer can't touch that, since it was added after the mail left the spammer's computer.

Except when I've been absent from my computer for several consecutive days, I always submit all my spam and let SC figure out if any of it was "too old" to file a report.

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With that information in mind, I will keep a closer eye on what is coming down and where these odd numbers are coming from - Thanks!

I have several email accounts (seven to be exact) that I am monitoring, but that is only across four email hosts, I haven't really been paying attention to which hosts has been getting the odd numbers, or if it has been across all of them. So that will give me somewhere to start looking to see what might be going on. I appreciate it!

Garde

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