Inundation of Spam

19:04 Mon 05 Nov 2007
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Every few months I get a wave of bounceback messages from a variety of email servers, caused by some spammer(s) using my domain as the domain for their From addresses. This morning I probably received over three hundred of them, and that was a relatively small number in comparison to some prior instances.

It’s unbelievably annoying. Spam as a whole is, of course. But somehow being beset by the blowback from someone else’s spam blast (as well as being the recipient of many spam blasts, of course) is particularly irksome.

I’m not sure what measures I can take to deal with this. (Upgrading my server and its antispam software would be a start, but I’ll leave that aside for the moment.) I want to be able to accept email that goes to more or less any address at my domain, and I’m not sure I want to rely on a whitelist of acceptable to addresses, partly because I’m paranoid about filtering out real messages. I considered adding a custom header to my outgoing emails and then spamfiltering all messages that purported to be bouncebacks that didn’t have this header, but a bunch of email servers don’t include all the headers in the bounceback messages, so I’d risk missing legitimate bounceback messages. It seems that some combination of determining whether or not something is a bounceback message, plus whitelisting, might be the answer, although offhand I’m not sure how to implement that using procmail. It would have helped, too, if I’d thought about this more carefully before selecting some of the things I use as From addresses, and had included some string in all of them that I could now search for.

Spam is so unbelievably annoying. Worse, its very existence is like a continual reminder of the depths of human greed and stupidity, because it’s composed of lies made in the hope of profit, and is prevalent because so many people fall for those lies.

And on that note, here’s a list of reasons why your anti-spam idea won’t work.

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