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What the hell happened to Spamcop?


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I have used SpamCop since early in its inception. I purchased credits multiple times because at that point SC provided a valuable service. I even have about 5MB left if it's still there after a long period of non-use. Recently I invoked SC's services again but to my dismay my spam-load has not decreased but rather increased.

Here are a few examples of hosts that seem to be immune to SC methods:

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476655906z3...7449990a7ef686z

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476656585z6...b0c88e8f34cc47z

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476656845z0...b7eb59bb98d35az

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476663631z4...a64317838c2067z

These hosts have been spamming me in an ever increasing number daily. How is this possible? Is SpamCop no longer effective the way it is being run by its new owners? Please advise.

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Cheers from another very-longtime user. Some years back I chucked the "fuel" system and went to a paid SpamCop mail service account, it has worked well for me.

I'm not sure what you mean by "immune to SpamCop methods." Do you mean that SpamCop has not stopped this particular spammer's operation, or do you simply mean that SpamCop is unable to detect this spam and so does not filter it from your inbox? These are really two different matters, let me take a shot at an explanation.

Neither SpamCop nor anyone else can stop people from trying to send you spam; the best you can do is to devise a really good filter to exclude it from your inbox (this is where SpamCop comes in).

I believe this is how the process works:

  1. You report spams you receive through SpamCop.
  2. SpamCop continuously compiles all info from all users' reports (as well as its own detection resources) and publishes an up-to-the-minute list of IPs that are trying to send spam to mail servers.
  3. Operators of mail servers can consult the SpamCop list (known as the SCBL) to decide what to do with incoming messages (i.e., accept, detain, reject outright).

Notice that there's nothing above that provides a direct benefit to you (the reporter). On the other hand, you can perhaps expect to receive less spam if you happen to be a customer or user of one of the operations in #3. If you are a paid SpamCop Mail Service user, you can have your mail pre-filtered by SpamCop and the spam detained for reporting. In both cases, it isn't really that you are being targeted with less spam, it is that the spam is being deleted or detained before it reaches your inbox. You can't count the number of spams turned away from your mailbox because (of course) you never see them.

As one late lamented regular to this forum used to observe, using SpamCop is somewhat altruistic. The yardstick of effectiveness is not "SpamCop solved my personal problem," but "Spamcop used my info to help solve problems for everyone including me."

-- rick

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<snip>

Recently I invoked SC's services again but to my dismay my spam-load has not decreased but rather increased.

<snip>

...That observation has been made here from time to time over the years but no one has yet provided conclusive evidence that reporting to SpamCop, in itself, caused their spam to increase. If you do a search (there's a search textbox near the top of this page between a white button labeled "Search for -->" and a blue button labeled "GO") with the right key words, such as "more spam since" you'll see some of those. It's not impossible that your reporting via SpamCop is directly and unavoidably the cause of the increase in spam but I would argue more likely would be one or more of these (and I'm sure there are others I'm inadvertently leaving out):
  • The timing of your restarting use of SpamCop reporting coincides with your e-mail address having made its way onto a list shared by spammers, so you were about to get an explosion of spam whether you returned to SpamCop reporting or not.
  • You opened spam in such a way as to identify your e-mail address to the spammers as one that you were actively using to read their spam.
  • The spam header or body contains information identifying your e-mail address and one or more of the "abuse" addresses to which SpamCop sent reports on your behalf is controlled by spammers and therefore they now know that you are actively using your e-mail address to read their spam or you are someone who reports spam and therefore worthy of retaliation by bombing with more spam.

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Here are a few examples of hosts that seem to be immune to SC methods:

These hosts have been spamming me in an ever increasing number daily. How is this possible? Is SpamCop no longer effective the way it is being run by its new owners? Please advise.

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476655906z3...7449990a7ef686z

Email server 206.123.155.219 info[at]mediainfrastr.net

Injection point not disclosed

SenderScore 7

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476656585z6...b0c88e8f34cc47z

198.176.62.173 abuse[at]precision-management.net

Injection point not disclosed

SenderScore 7

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476656845z0...b7eb59bb98d35az

163.253.49.103 jennifer[at]sura.net

Injection point not disclosed

SenderScore (not a email server? )

http://old.cni.org/docs/educom.html Website

Contact form

http://www.cni.org/contact/

http://www.spamcop.net/sc?id=z5476663631z4...a64317838c2067z

206.123.153.251 contact[at]smartlinknetworksys.com bounces (99 sent : 99 bounces)

212.67.176.55 Injection point abuse[at]qinip.net

I take it this is a Gmail account, do they not filter your spam accurately?

They do for me.

Best to just push the "Report spam" TAB for Gmail but your choice

Once spammers have your address it's sold on. A lot of email address are taken from your contacts computers when they get compromised. If you open email in HTML "webbugs" can confirm your address (Gmail does not auto open images because of this)

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