Re: Fighting Spam with <User Unknown> messages.

David Crook (
Mon, 01 Mar 1999 11:57:40 -0800

I was also thinking of a solution for spam. Mine would be called the
"brick-network". Basically it involves recruiting enough people to return
spam messages to the spammer via a brick thrown through their window. We
could even sell advertising space on the sides of the bricks. I image
window replacement services and first-aid supplies would be big sponsers.

Dave "Not that I'm bitter" Crook

At 11:35 AM 3/1/99 -0800, Ian Andrew Bell wrote:
>Typically, those guys who sell SPAM lists are now promising to
>"guarantee" that all email addresses that they have harvested are real,
>operational email addresses. To me, this implies that they are sending
>out test SPAMs and waiting either for you to try to unsubscribe yourself
>(which oddly never seems to work) or for no reply at all -- indicating
>that it's reached an active recipient.
>BUT, if they do receive a reply from SMTP that claims a "User Unknown"
>error I'll bet they delete that address from their data set
>SO, what's needed is a convenient way for our hero, the End User, to
>generate fake "User Unknown" messages to bounce back to SPAMmers
>Unfortunately, to make it look legit you'd have to change your name &
>email in your preferred client which is way too inconvenient. And you
>wanna do it fast before the SPAMmer's email address gets invalidated by
>their ISP.
>One way to do this could be a web page. Specify a mailhost and your
>email address on a form, along with the spammer's address. Have the CGI
>open an SMTP connection directly to the spammer's mail server and spoof
>a reply from the mailhost you specified. Insert a generic User Unknown
>message quoting your email address and Bob's your uncle!
>I'd do this, but it requires some creative SMTP/TCP spoofery that I
>don't fully understand. Also I haven't written actual code in years,
>and HTML bores me.
>Anyone wanna discuss this? Let's get some VC and build a startup around
>this! Maybe @Home will buy us out! (joke)
> .:|:..:|:.
>Attachment Converted: "c:\program files\eudora\attach\ibell5.vcf"

David Crook -
CommWerks - Industrial Strength Internet Solutions