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Is Spamcop any easier to use nowadays?


syncopator
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I had a Spamcop mail account some time ago.

If I remember correctly, not only did I have to report spam but Spamcop would then send a separate message to me for each and every one reported to them an I would have to confirm that the original was spam.

Which was time consuming and extremely annoying and I just wasn't prepared to do that.

I abandoned my Spamcop mail facility because of that.

I would like to know if things are any easier now?

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I had a Spamcop mail account some time ago. 

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Don't know how long ago you had your account, but quick reporting has been around for several years now. They have made it safer (though never foolproof) by the addition of mailhosts which knows the routes your messages are supposed to travel and automatically accept s those lines.

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Thank you for your response Steven.

I think it must have been a couple of years ago when I gave up and abandoned the account.

Excuse me, but I simply don't understand

"They have made it safer ..... by the addition of mailhosts which knows the routes your messages are supposed to travel and automatically accept s those lines."

I have no idea whatsoever that that means. Would you be good enough to explain

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Excuse me, but I simply don't understand 

"They have made it safer ..... by the addition of mailhosts which knows the routes your messages are supposed to travel and automatically accept s those lines."

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In the mailhost configuration, you have spamcop send you a "probe" message to each of your MX record servers. You then return that probe to be parsed and spamcop saves those servers to your configuration for future use in your parses. This checks that your ISP's or MSP's handle headers in a way spamcop understands.

When you submit a message for parsing, spamcop recognizes the known hosts and trusts them automatically. This helps to eliminate reporting your own ISP's servers which was one of the biggest problems with quick reporting. It can still happen if your ISP changes/adds mailservers, but that is less likely.

Quick reporting ONLY reports the source of the spam and does not report any spamvertized websites, if you are worried about that. Those you still need to confirm manually. I only do the full reporting on the few messages a week that slip by the spamcop filters and when I have the time. All others I quick report. You can quick report from webmail by selecting the messages and hitting the "Report as spam" link.

HTH

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SpamCop FAQ links at the top of the page, under the SpamCop Parsing and Reporting Service section ... there are the followiing links;

What is Mole Reporting?

What is Quick Reporting?

There is also a link in that FAQ to a Glossary, which then also has a link to a Dictionary .... we've tried to answer the question ..... just in case Steven's answer didn't go far enough ....

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<snip>

... not only did I have to report spam but Spamcop would then send a separate message to me for each and every one reported to them an I would have to confirm that the original was spam.

Which was time consuming and extremely annoying and I just wasn't prepared to do that.

I abandoned my Spamcop mail facility because of that.

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Hi, syncopator!

...Were you under the impression that you had to report every spam message? If so, that is unfortunate because it is not true (perhaps it used to be?). A number of SpamCop users receive dozens, even hundreds (do I hear thousands?) of spam e-mail messages a day; they prioritize by most recent, types of spam (porn, drugs, stock, etc) or some other criteria and report only those for which they have the time and inclination.

...We (well, I, at any rate -- I shouldn't speak for everyone although I'm sure I speak for many) appreciate any reporting that anyone does ....

...Hope you'll consider re-joining us! :) <g>

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Steven, thankyou for trying but I'm afraid that most of what you say still doesn't mean much to me. What, for instance, are MX record servers?

Wazoo, I've read the information on those two links. I gather from the "Mole" one that retaliation or revenge for reporting spam is not uncommon. I have experienced this, see later. And I gather from the "Quick" link that the easy route leaves one open to just that.

turetzsr, no, of course I didn't think that. What I mean is that every item of spam which I did send (which was just about all of it anyway - but that's beside the point) generated an item of email from Spamcop to me asking me to confirm that it was spam, which means I had to take action again, i.e. two actions instead of one just reporting an item and letting the system get on with it.

To get back to retaliation ....

I use Mailwasher in conjunction with BlueFrog. In common with other BlueFrog users I have received two items of threatening email from someone who says the volume of spam will increase dramatically if I continue to use BlueFrog. In fact the main body of each item was identical and identical to that published in one of BlueFrog's forums.

I will not be intimidated by these, or any other, threats. In fact they only serve to make me more determined to fight them.

That's why I am here, sounding out SpamCop again.

However, I must say that from my viewpoint the whole of SpamCop smacks of something - and I'm not trying to be rude - which is very much an elitist preserve.

Just looking around at the FAQs etc results, very quickly, in information overload. It is FAR TOO COMPLICATED.

What I want to do is report spam without the scum of the earth "getting their own back", safe in the knowledge that by doing so the volume of garbage which I receive will ideally decrease, and if that is but a dream that it won't increase.

And I want to do it simply. I don't want to have to report each item twice.

I use Yahoo's email facility and wonder if I can use SpamCop with it, instead of creating a new address at SpamCop, and continue to use Mailwasher and BlueFrog too?

If not, why not? And what does anyone suggest, perhaps instead of Yahoo's mail and/or Mailwasher/BlueFrog?

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Steven, thankyou for trying but I'm afraid that most of what you say still doesn't mean much to me.  What, for instance, are MX record servers?

http://forum.spamcop.net/dict/M

Wazoo, I've read the information on those two links.  I gather from the "Mole" one that retaliation or revenge for reporting spam is not uncommon.  I have experienced this, see later.  And I gather from the "Quick" link that the easy route leaves one open to just that.

Not sure I follow all that logic. And once again, I rarely use the SpamCop parsing and reporting tool myself beyond troubleshooting someone else's issues. (I'm much more draconian than what the SpamCop.net toolset does.) You want threats? I've got millions of them, lawsuits, death, physical attacks, on and on ... yet ... here I am ...

I use Mailwasher in conjunction with BlueFrog.  In common with other BlueFrog users I have received two items of threatening email from someone who says the volume of spam will increase dramatically if I continue to use BlueFrog.

Bluefrog has issues, discussed elsewhere ... but am a bit confused at the aboce and this bit .... if you've "been identified" via Bluefrog reporting, then what's the difference between how the reporting is accomplished? Simply noting that SpamCop.net reporting also feeds the SpamCopDNSBL, which is used by other ISPs and tools ....

However, I must say that from my viewpoint the whole of SpamCop smacks of something - and I'm not trying to be rude - which is very much an elitist preserve. 

Just looking around at the FAQs etc results, very quickly,  in information overload.  It is FAR TOO COMPLICATED.

????? I really can't follow that ... actual reporting is pretty simple. Get an account (free, paid reporting, e-mail) .. receive spam .. report it ... end of story .... The FAQ is massive due to folks trying to do things in a non-standard way, use non-standard or broken tools, spammers busting their hump to get around the reporting results, etc. Put another way, the FAQ is there for those that run into problems ... that there are less than 5,000 registered users here, not that many "new" folks posting into the newsgroups (asking questions that were attempted to be covered in the FAQ here) basically suggests that things aren't really "that hard" ....

What I want to do is report spam without the scum of the earth "getting their own back", safe in the knowledge that by doing so the volume of garbage which I receive will ideally decrease, and if that is but a dream that it won't increase.

A post I made last night in the Lounge, Dang .. sorry to see it go ..... has him talking about being so naive in 2003/2004 ... I was talking about 1998 timeframe .... yes, it's depressing that SpamCop.net still exists.

And I want to do it simply.  I don't want to have to report each item twice. 

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It was my understanding that MailWasher already had hooks for SpamCop.net reporting .. giess I'll have to go look up what happened to that when I get some time ...

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<snip>

turetzsr,

42497[/snapback]

...That's just my signon. Please refer to me as (the more people-friendly) Steve T. (see my sig). Thanks! :) <g>
no, of course I didn't think that.  What I mean is that every item of spam which I did send (which was just about all of it anyway - but that's beside the point) generated an item of email from Spamcop to me asking me to confirm that it was spam, which means I had to take action again, i.e. two actions instead of one just reporting an item and letting the system get on with it.

42497[/snapback]

...It seems, then, that the solution to your difficulty with SpamCop is just to report fewer spam. If you are willing to interface with SpamCop, say, ten times a day, then report five spams.
However, I must say that from my viewpoint the whole of SpamCop smacks of something - and I'm not trying to be rude - which is very much an elitist preserve. 

Just looking around at the FAQs etc results, very quickly,  in information overload.  It is FAR TOO COMPLICATED.

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...One reason it may seem so to you (and rest assured that you aren't alone!) is that understanding spam (and e-mail, in general) is fairly complicated. Another is that there are a lot of different things going on in "SpamCop" -- reporting, e-mail service, blacklist (two parts to this, too -- admins who use the blacklist and people who have had their e-mail rejected allegedly because of the blacklist). But using it for reporting is fairly simple (at least, I have found it so). At first, I was totally baffled by what it did but by looking through the discussions here, I have learned quite a bit. :) <g>
<snip>

And I want to do it simply.  I don't want to have to report each item twice.

<snip>

42497[/snapback]

...But you are not reporting the spam twice -- you are submitting the spam to the parser on the first pass and verifying the results and having reports submitted on your behalf in the second pass. There's just no way of doing all this in one go and I don't find it all that off-putting. I hope, after consideration of the time savings (parsing the headers, finding the abuse address to which to report, composing the reports and sending them out without exposing your e-mail address) offered by the SpamCop, you'll rejoin us! :) <g>
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Wazoo, I've read the information on those two links.  I gather from the "Mole" one that retaliation or revenge for reporting spam is not uncommon.  I have experienced this, see later.  And I gather from the "Quick" link that the easy route leaves one open to just that.

Retaliation is not as common as it used to be. There are too many reporters. And I don't see that Quick Reporting is any more open to retaliation than ordinary reporting. The warning is to prevent reporting yourself.

turetzsr,  no, of course I didn't think that.  What I mean is that every item of spam which I did send (which was just about all of it anyway - but that's beside the point) generated an item of email from Spamcop to me asking me to confirm that it was spam, which means I had to take action again, i.e. two actions instead of one just reporting an item and letting the system get on with it. 

It is not necessary to respond to every spamcop email. When you get the email, you just go to the web site and click on Unreported spam until all are reported which is much faster. You do need two actions unless you use Quick Reporting.

To get back to retaliation ....

I use Mailwasher in conjunction with BlueFrog.  In common with other BlueFrog users I have received two items of threatening email from someone who says the volume of spam will increase dramatically if I continue to use BlueFrog.  In fact the main body of each item was identical and identical to that published in one of BlueFrog's forums. 

I will not be intimidated by these, or any other, threats.  In fact they only serve to make me more determined to fight them. 

Is Blue Frog the same as Blue Security?

That's why I am here, sounding out SpamCop again.

However, I must say that from my viewpoint the whole of SpamCop smacks of something - and I'm not trying to be rude - which is very much an elitist preserve. 

Just looking around at the FAQs etc results, very quickly,  in information overload.  It is FAR TOO COMPLICATED.

Think of email the way you think of your automobile. Some people know nothing about the way their car works (in spite of learning in school about engines). Others know basically what happens in principle, but can't actually fix anything. Some know some basic fixes or what noises mean big trouble. And there are some who can change the oil and do basic repairs. A few know enough to actually do major repairs, but need a mechanic because they don't have the tools.

I am a technically non-fluent person. It did seem very confusing to me in the beginning, but I have learned some of the basics in principle - at least enough to report spam with confidence. However, spamcop is primarily for email administrators so, although there are some end users who frequent the forum, most of them are the equivalent of true mechanics who have tools.

What I want to do is report spam without the scum of the earth "getting their own back", safe in the knowledge that by doing so the volume of garbage which I receive will ideally decrease, and if that is but a dream that it won't increase. 

And I want to do it simply.  I don't want to have to report each item twice.

Unless you are willing to learn a lot more about how email works in order to effectively combat spam, there is not much more that you can do.

At this point, reporting mostly feeds 'blocklists' used for filtering. Reporting as many spam as you have time for is worthwhile. Some people only report those that are not caught by their filters. Others only report the 10 most recent. Every little bit counts, but there are enough reporters that one doesn't have to report every single spam every day.

There are other strategies to combat spam as a whole. Education of end users is one of them. Or the very simplest is to change email addresses and use sneakemail for web use. Or write a letter to Yahoo who is oblivious to how their policies affect the rest of the internet.

I use Yahoo's email facility and wonder if I can use SpamCop with it,  instead of creating a new address at SpamCop, and continue to use Mailwasher and BlueFrog too?

If not, why not?   And what does anyone suggest, perhaps instead of Yahoo's mail and/or Mailwasher/BlueFrog?

42497[/snapback]

Since I am technically non-fluent, I can't help with this question. The only thing that I know is that Mailwasher is a good filter by others' reports. At one time, they included a bounce function to 'bounce' spam which was very bad since it effectively sent your spam to the innocent, forged return addresses. I don't know if they have been convinced that that is a bad feature or not.

It really isn't that difficult to learn as much as you need to in order to accomplish (or set) your goal for being anti-spam. People here will guide you. And if you study Wazoo's answers, you will learn very quickly since he has much knowledge.

Good Luck!

Miss Betsy

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Before I start using SpamCop again there is another question I'd like to ask.

At http://www.spamcop.net/anonsignup.shtml, Item 3 of Getting started says "SpamCop emails reports on my behalf. Replies to these reports will be forwarded to my email address. I understand that these replies are not spam."

Can I elect NOT to receive those replies? I just want to report spam and hear nothing. Nothing.

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Can I elect NOT to receive those replies?  I just want to report spam and hear nothing.  Nothing.

42582[/snapback]

No, but they are of a standard format so they are easy enough to filter, but that is not really suggested because it it YOUR responsibility to see the reports don't go where they should not (like your ISP) which we have been discussing.

Spamcop is a tool you are using to send your reports to the ISP of the spam source (and maybe ISP of spamvertized site).

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"...Replies to these reports will be forwarded to my email address. I understand that these replies are not spam."

42582[/snapback]

There are "replies" and there are "replies" .... The option under Preferences reads;

Report reply handling

[] Forward only replies from sentient people

[] Forward replies from people and robots

SpamCop challenges "administrators" by making them respond to an email to determine if they are people or robots. Only human replies which require action from you are forwarded to your attention by default.

You may override this behavior if you would rather receive every reply, robotic or otherwise.

.....

Basically what is being talked about are auto-acks. What the SpamCop.net Admin does want to allow is that (all too rare) ISP that that wants to make contact with the Reporter ro possibly ask for more data, ask for willingness to sign/provide an affadavit, .... nanae is ripe with ISPs complaining about the non-response of some queries such as this .. though the obvious issue is that spammers have ran the same game against reporters in order to validate/obtain more (specific) data .... (just as when sending reports/complaints, due diligence is required)

But ... let's not overlook the fact that the free-reporting tool is there to try it out ....

try it out ....

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Steven and Wazoo seem to be talking about two different kinds of replies:

Steven is talking about the 'replies' from spamcop that you have reported spam (non-quick) or the 'replies' that list where the parser has reported (quick), I believe.

Wazoo is talking about the 'replies' that you actually get from the ISP in response to a report that is forwarded to you by spamcop. If you opt for all, then you get the auto-acks, though many ISPs don't bother to send them to spamcop reports. So not getting auto-acks is preferable.

So few reports get a 'sentient' reply that reporters generally ignore them. IMHO, this is a big mistake. Although some do come from spammers and you have to obfuscate your address in order to reply (since the email goes to the report address and is then forwarded so if you reply, your email address is shown), IMHO, it is only polite to reply if the ISP has taken the time to email a response. And everyone makes mistakes. Sometimes the reply points out that you have made a mistake. Then everyone is happier if you take action - apologizing to the ISP, notifying the deputies. It gives spamcop reports more legitimacy if reporters are responsible.

Miss Betsy

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Steven and Wazoo seem to be talking about two different kinds of replies: 

42587[/snapback]

Yep .. I felt the need to cover the 'other' scenario, just in case ...

It was my understanding that MailWasher already had hooks for SpamCop.net reporting ..

and that was once again addressed this morning by a newsgroup post, user talking about the "built-in interface to SpamCop" .... so it sounds as if it's still available (in addition to the (bad) Bounce setting.)

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So few reports get a 'sentient' reply that .....

42587[/snapback]

And just to indicate how few, I have yet to receive a single report after reporting thousands of messages over a two year period of time.
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  • 2 weeks later...

BLUE SECURITY / QUICK REPORTING

About Blue Security and its operations - This is in reply to some postings in this thread

Moderator Edit: Duplicate content removed. See http://forum.spamcop.net/forums/index.php?...indpost&p=42809 for the "explanation"

Spamcop Quick Reporting - this is also in response to some postings in this thread

I had some difficulty in (1) discovering the existence of Quick Reporting in Spamcop (2) discovering how to implement it.

To assist others who would like to implement quiick reporting without having to dig through many postings here, I recommend a "quick guide to quick reporting" in Castlecops. See the information at http://wiki.castlecops.com/SpamCop_Report_Considerations

Edited by Wazoo
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Its been a while sense I've read this thread. Reading it in summary makes me think of some "tricks" used by civil engineers to control traffic speed. You don't put up a sign, you build the curve a little flatter, you build the shoulder of the road narrower with walls closer to the traffic lanes.

The credibility of spamcop's reports with ISPs concerning email coming from their addresses and the credibility of spamcop's black list is dependent on the quality of the input = spamtraps and reported spam from the web page, submit and quick reports and reports from those with spamcop email accounts (however that works).

With the exception of spamtraps, submitted spam is from a self selected group (us). How to control the quality of the submitted spam is a problem that must be managed to retain the credibility/effectiveness of the reports/product.

One approach maybe to effect the self selection process of submitters of spam. You can't force someone to review the results of spam they input into the spamcop tool, but you can discourage some from using the tool. If you don't want to, have time to, review the reports resulting from spam you submit maybe you should find an other way to direct your efforts. JMHO

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Its been a while sense I've read this thread. Reading it in summary makes me think of some "tricks" used by civil engineers to control traffic speed. You don't put up a sign, you build the curve a little flatter, you build the shoulder of the road narrower with walls closer to the traffic lanes.

The credibility of spamcop's reports with ISPs concerning email coming from their addresses and the credibility of spamcop's black list is dependent on the quality of the input = spamtraps and reported spam from the web page, submit and quick reports and reports from those with spamcop email accounts (however that works).

With the exception of spamtraps, submitted spam is from a self selected group (us). How to control the quality of the submitted spam is a problem that must be managed to retain the credibility/effectiveness of the reports/product.

One approach maybe to effect the self selection process of submitters of spam. You can't force someone to review the results of spam they input into the spamcop tool, but you can discourage some from using the tool. If you don't want to, have time to, review the reports resulting from spam you submit maybe you should find an other way to direct your efforts. JMHO

Couldn't agree with you more! (though I don't know that it is a 'conscious' process for TPTB the way it is for traffic engineers; it may just be serendipity their style of communication discourages those who don't have the time or inclination to report spam responsibly. Judging from spamcop admin posts here in the forum, they are interested in helping even those who are self-professed as being too busy to understand the process.)

Miss Betsy

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