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Munge reports by removing differences between multiple submissions of the same message?


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I read in the FAQ that spammers use tracking codes to track which emails are reported. I would imagine SpamCop receives many reports about the same spam message from different people. Could the differences between these reports be removed to produce a single report free of any tracking information? Would this still be useful to ISPs? What is the minimal amount of information a report would need to be useful? If it would still be useful to ISPs, producing reports where some information is aggregated would be a nice feature. It would give us something in between normal munged reports and mole mode and it might produce reports that couldn't be traced to a specific user no matter how a spammer tries to track their messages.

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Hi eusocial,

Some factors to throw into consideration -

  1. some ISPs don't accept SC reports already because of the munging, minimal though it is
  2. there are a huge number of ways coding could be inserted in both/either headers and bodies of emails so there's no predicting what 'reduce to common content' munging might look like
  3. the courtesy ISP reports are a huge volume, holding this for an indeterminate time while scanning for unknown similarities doesn't seem feasible (remembering the one spammer may be sending from multiple IP addresses via botnet)
  4. the Deputies and SC Admin do everything humanly possible to ensure SC reports do not get back to the spammers - they kill reports to known or suspected spammers
  5. reporters have the option to report anonymously - mole reporting
  6. there is no clear evidence that spammers, generally, seek retribution against reporters on the odd occasion they might get that information - their business model has moved on
  7. notwithstanding all of the above, some highly experienced spam fighters swear there is an increase in spam when they report through SC, and a decrease when they stop.

Seems to me there's a lot more against the suggestion than for it. I used mole reporting myself for years, by the way, until I convinced myself there was no need. YMMV.

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