Great Circle Associates Majordomo-Users
(January 2001)

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Subject: Re: Mailing List Spam...
From: Ron Johnson <rjohnson @ elite . net>
Date: Fri, 12 Jan 2001 17:38:41 -0800 (PST)
To: Chip Old <fold @ bcpl . net>
Cc: Majordomo-Users List <majordomo-users @ GreatCircle . COM>
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On Thu, 11 Jan 2001, Chip Old is thought to have said:

> That doesn't apply to this situation.  Somebody spammed our individual
> e-mail addresses, not the list address.  In the spam there was reference

Personally, my best guess is that someone, somehow, parsed out the email
addresses of everyone who posted to the list for some given period.

I did't get the spam, but I haven't posted to this list in quite a while.

All they (the spammer) would have had to do is join the list, and grab
some of the archives -- or, join the list and wait a while, parsing the
addresses of everyone that posts.

It's not hard to do that, just join the list, filter to a file, and (on
unix) a mostly successful command might be:

	grep "^From: " filename_of_mailspool | sort -fu > addresses.txt

I actually ran the above on my mailspool for this list for this month to
see what it'd spit out, and out popped 44 unique addresses.  That's almost
certainly not the entire memberlist, and it's not a very good way to
harvest addresses, but for a spammer, maybe good enough.

Since nobody posted (partial) headers of the spam, I'm not 100% certain I
didn't get the spam, nor do I know if it tried to go through, but got
blocked by my server, but I don't recognize it, and I dip everyone who
spams me in boiling oil (1), so I oughtta remember.

-- -+- Ron Johnson <>

(1) Ok, not exactly.  I wouldn't even really want to.  It'd be nice if
nobody spammed, though.  I do, however, block lots of servers that spam,
setup lots of filters, and report spammers when it may make a difference.

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