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Spam Return Program

A computer program that sends spam back to the senders.
  [vote for,

I hate spam. Just hate it. There isn't much I can do about it though, I don't have the time or savvy to filter my little yahoo account, and for me it's just as easy to delete all the African assistance requests, Viagra ads, work at home schemes and penis enlargment nonsence. Next day the same stuff is right back, along with Married But Lonely. I want to stuff this crap down the sender's throat! Now there's an idea! The logic is simple. Only a very small percentage of all spam ever gets answered, usually about four sales per one million spams. The sender's inbox is empty compared to his outbox. All he has to do is sort a few orders from a small pile of hate-mail. My Idea is simply to cram his inbox full of his own stuff. If there was an e-mail button called "return to sender" it would soon have the spammers swimming in a swill of disguised orders with phony addresses. Of course you know I have no way to make this happen, but if there is a vengeful hacker out there who wants to make rich men cry.... Reference, a spam article in Time or Newsweek a month or two ago. How did they find out I have a small penis?
carjug4, Dec 01 2002

Mailwasher http://www.mailwasher.net
This is the fully baked version of your idea - it's actually very useful (and free!) [CheeseFilteredCigarette, Oct 04 2004]


       Mostly a rant.   

       Looking through my inbox, I find that most of the spam doesn't rely on an actual return e-mail address; otherwise they'd be deluged by bounces and complaints and abuse reports.   

       Instead, it almost always includes a URL. Perhaps DDoSing that URL would be something. Everyone runs an agent which, when you delete a message with the "spam" key, starts pounding every URL in it for the next 24 hours?   

       But that uses up our bandwidth and that of innocent folks in the middle as much as it does theirs.
egnor, Dec 01 2002

       See my link for Mailwasher, carjug.   

       It allows you to bounce your message back to the spammer, which has the effect of filling his mailbox and also fooling him/it/her/them into thinking your email address isn't valid.   

       All incoming mail is checked against a regularly updated database of know spammers, too, so a lot of it is automatic.   

CheeseFilteredCigarette, Dec 03 2002

       The junk factories don't give out genuine e-mail addresses. But are there other ways you could use their junk at their expense?
A contest could be one way to stop Unsolicited E-mail. Each Spam you delete becomes your “entry”. Have the Spam converted into a short code, then deleted, and software on your PC forwards your score to the contest organization. But it’s speed that counts – the faster you delete Spam, the higher your score. When it hits the server, no time to read it, you want to delete it quick. For valuable prizes. Or points can go to support a charity. People don't read the junk mail, and the Spammers are paying for the bandwidth to support someone else's contest.
Amos Kito, Dec 04 2002

       I use a bit of Perl script in a separate directory on our web server (that's disallowed in robots.txt) that creates a web page with bogus email addresses, then tricks the spambot into thinking that there are even more pages to scrape from, when in fact, it's just calling the Perl script again. This month, I had 6 hits on it, and the spambots downloaded 1.8MB worth of bogus addresses. HAHA!   

       Also, I use SpamCop (although the mail server we're on (Burlee / Interland) is using an older IMail server, and doesn't properly report Source IP addresses, so it's almost useless to me, except to hopefully harass my ISP into upgrading their mail server).   

       To report spam, I use Sam Spade... it's invaluable, and I've dug out spamvertised websites that have done 8 (!) redirects, with no problem. You just have to keep everything in order, and compose the spam submission report email step-by-step... keeps me from getting confused when I have 30 windows open in Sam Spade. But, I can dig out a non-redirected spamvertised website in 3 minutes, a single-redirect in 5, double in about 8, etc.   

       So far today, we've gone 14 1/2 hours without receiving one spam...
hillscap, Mar 05 2004


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