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Guenther Publishing

Electronic Publishing Since 1993, Founded 1981

 

SPAM with Forged Return Address

Years ago we ran an autoresponder at   <_info_@_guenther_._com_>   on a virtual server, which has since gone the way of the technology bubble. That ISP was attacked and their servers hijacked. Ever since then these addresses have been used by spammers and other criminals as their return addresses. Including ours.

We know, the government isn't going to help. Legislation isn't going to prevent spam. Spammers will either ignore the legislation, or move abroad to countries, where such legislation would be invalid. The little legislation, that has been enacted, has even attempted to legalize spam (because Corporate America has discovered spam as a marketing tool, and pressures Congress to allow it). Even if SPAM were declared a "weapon of mass destruction", since it usually has forged origins, Bush would probably invade the WRONG country to stamp it out or to give Brown & Root another reconstruction job.



The only people who can fix the problem are those, who can make a TECHNICAL change to the way spam is delivered - the way EMAIL is delivered. If you want a fix, contact the ITEF (Internet Engineering Task Force), who could (if they wanted to) implement a fix, that would change from the current PUSH email to PULL email similar to requesting web pages. The only push remaining would be to NOTIFY the recipient of available email. The email recipient would get mail in the following manner:

  1. The first time you receive a notice from a new correspondent, such as:
    You've got email from < a b c @ x y z . c o m > you might have the following options:
This kind of email by subscription would make forged return addressing impossible. Poeple who allow their mail server to be highjacked would be inconvenienced (giving them an incentive to shape up), instead of the recipients of unwanted spam. Finally, it would also become possible to trace the spammers, since they would have to leave a trace on the highjacked servers. Even better, we could place the actual spam servers on our spam lists, instead of some forged email address (like ours).

We at Guenther Publishing regret, that our name has been used by spammers, but hope you will understand, that we have no control over this criminal activity.

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