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SpamCop Denouncer

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The solution:

Direct download link for "novices": http://daniele.modena1.it/code/spamcop-den.../spamcop.py.txt

Hitting it will only transfer a non-executable text file.

And for the screenshots about the processing of an mbox file:

1. Get SpamCop ID(s)

The first reporting step is to submit the spam contained in a mailbox and get a "spamcop id" from spamcop.net. This will be used to gather further information and refer to each piece of spam.

2. Collect information about the spam

Then the scri_pt downloads the report page, where the detailed processing is shown by spamcop.net and where there are the submission forms. That page parsed to extract important information, then converted to text and stored in a temporary file for further reference.

3. Analyze the reports with fast dialogs

This is the only manual step. Each dialog presents an excerpt of the spam and the list of recipients. Each recipient can be de-selected and has a short string showing which is the role of the involved network (s: source, w: spamvertised, etc). You can see the full report (spamcop.net page) switching on the first entry and pressing ok. Then you can add your personal notes.

Click enter an the spam is confirmed, or "cancel" and it will be explicitly cancelled from spamcop.net. Your choose is stored for the next step.

4. Submit the reports

After you have analyzed all of them, the reports will be sent, confirming to spamcop.net as you would have done in your browser, but without interaction ;)

A brief review of the submitted reports is printed (it is a slice of the response page obtained from spamcop.net). In case of error, the full web page will be printed out for debug.

5. Exit stats

At the end of the submission step some brief stats will be printed about the session. The time cost is calculated starting from the first response to a dialog (if you take a coffe between dialogs, ignore it!). In this case SCD was ran with -d switch so the mailbox containing the spam was cleared.


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You are NOT the target of this stuff for the moment, and will not be for a long time. Clear?

Absolutely! But since I don't have a very clear idea of what's going on (as well as being a novice) and don't understand Italian (though I might be able to figure some via babelfish and long ago Latin), I doubt that I will ever visit your website.

I am not paranoid, but I do like to know enough to make a choice about what I do. If I were more technically fluent, it might be fun to visit your website and see what you are up to!

Miss Betsy

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...I am not paranoid, but I do like to know enough to make a choice about what I do. If I were more technically fluent, it might be fun to visit your website and see what you are up to!...
Miss B, as is usual, has a point. Many people would be deterred by the security alerts they may receive - for instance, visiting with XP Pro SP3 and IE7 one will see (though NOT on the new 'safe' page) "This website wants to run the following add-on: 'MSXML 5.0' from 'Microsoft Corporation'. If you trust the website and the add-on and want it to allow it to run, click here..." (unless MSXML 5.0 has been previously authorized - somewhere). If they are deterred, then that is not the problem.

Daniele has said already his site (or part of it) is not for tyros - though the XML warning will occur right at the opening page as might be seen by a passer-by. He has stated elsewhere his ideas about the purpose of a personal website - particularly what the owner might get from it, in exchange for the effort, and, if I understand correctly, that would not include him being condemned to transform himself into a full-time 'professional' website developer.

If he is willing to forgo visits from people like Miss Betsy and they are sensible enough to stay away then everyone is happy. But one cannot rely on the common sense of visitors. A blinking LED is one thing, but possibly encouraging visitors to approve controls (which are then active wherever else they go) - when safer options are (supposedly) available - is another. I am no expert in these matters but there seems to be wise advice given in: MSDN blog on add-on messages. But, at the end of the day, the concerns about the download page have been quickly and graciously addressed by Daniele - other matters are things of curiosity only and none of our business really.

And I love the name 'mythsmith'. As I once remarked to my country's leading employer of military historians, "There is nothing wrong with myths, they are more memorable than the facts and less mutable."

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Thank you Farelf for having reported that. I hope I corrected it. It was a line in sarissa java scri_pt, part of Plone package, written to overcome shortage of IE conformance to standards :( I would never have seen that, 'cause I have never visited my site with IE :D, so your help was precious.

"Mythsmith" is a composed word myth+smith, and refer to a "legend-maker", who puts great effort (and pain) in it, like beating and forging metal.

I coined the word years ago reading a verse of Tolkien's Mythopoeia:

Blessed are the legend-makers with their rhyme

of things not found within recorded time.

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I, too, like the 'name' mythsmith and those who make legends are blessed. Not only those who make rhymes, but also others who actually make something for others to see - I am thinking of those who decorate yards or make gardens, but if I thought longer there might be other things - like websites.

BTW, my Flash Player (which I had to install for a particular reason) can't find the internet to update itself. And twice my clock has gone bonkers recently, once resetting to December 2001 and the other time to some other weird date in the past. Can't blame it on mythsmith though!

Miss Betsy

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