Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Spamfighting Since the Death of MakeLoveNotSpam?

Cliff posted more than 9 years ago | from the keep-your-junk-out-of-my-inbox-KTHX dept.

Spam 352

vacuum_tuber asks: "The now-defunct Lycos anti-spamsite screen saver, MakeLoveNotSpam, was extremely well received despite the whines and hand wringing from the no-one-should-ever-actively-defend-themselves crowd. There was speculation after its demise that Open Source spam-punishing tools would emerge. Other tools such as SpamVampire, LadVampire (punishes fake bank sites), Spam Research Tool and others were mentioned with increasing frequency, but there has been no coherent followup to gauge what people are doing since the death of the Lycos screen saver. What are you doing that you think is effective in punishing spammers or their spam-site sponsors?"

cancel ×

352 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

FP! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195592)

frist ps0t

Simple solution... (4, Funny)

ActionJesus (803475) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195597)

Just chop their heads off. See how well they spam if they cant see their monitor.

Slashdot Hypocrisy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195639)

Amazing how a majority of Slashdot users are against toppling a dictatorship that has severed the limbs of people or boiled people who spoke out against the regime as being the wrong thing to do but when some guy sends out a few mortgage offers or sells pharmecuticals, Slashdotters go insane with rage and fury, demanding all sorts of highly unjustifiable punishments and torture.

Hey Spamboy... (1)

Chordonblue (585047) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195692)

Maybe it's not the crime (taken one at a time), but the fact that spammers like you send out MILLIONS of your crimes everyday.

Rob a purse, go to jail. Rob it 4 billion times? Hmmmm...

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195710)

As a /.er who agrees thinks war was a bad idea and spamers should be shot I will point out that we don't know what's going to happen in the next 20 years but chances are IRAQ is going to:

A) Get worse.

B) COST US LIVES.

Where as killing spamers would have little risk to US lives and make things better not worse.

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195762)

So, according to you, Iraqi lives are worth less than US lives, and we shouldn't liberate them, we should just let them suffer.

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (1)

Elwood P Dowd (16933) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195779)

Wait a second. That couldn't possibly be a false dichotomy.

WHY, YES. YES IT COULD.

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195831)

How so?

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (-1, Offtopic)

Elwood P Dowd (16933) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195852)

At no point were there two options, one being to liberate the Iraqis, and one being to let them suffer.

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195781)

That is exactly what I am saying.

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195798)

Well then, I truly hope that you are assaulted some day in the future, and no one tries to help you.

Re:Slashdot Hypocrisy (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195884)

Then, of course, there's a possibility that he wasn't serious.
Did you consider that possibility?

It's about time (0, Offtopic)

NoelWeb (797393) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195598)

Holy sh!@at, first post!

Re:It's about time (0, Offtopic)

Kobun (668169) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195615)

No you're not. Best just give up and cease the first post business, forever...

Re:It's about time (0, Flamebait)

NoelWeb (797393) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195627)

yup... mod me way down, I suck

a shot in the head? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195599)

seriously, the best way to deal with spammers is to blow their brains out and hang them on a pole.

others will be sure to notice!

Make them use the products that they spam (2, Funny)

narad (800373) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195643)

The best would be to make them use what they span for continuously. They should be made to use their penis enlarger and breast enhancers.

Re:Make them use the products that they spam (4, Funny)

ZeroExistenZ (721849) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195882)

So spammers would be crushed under their massive erect penisses...

Re:a shot in the head? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195864)

Didn't they used to crusify people like that as a warning? With thousands next to a road?

They made one of them a halfgod to my recollection.
No showing off eliminated criminals as a warning or to set an example is the lesson we should learn from that imo..

The best way (5, Insightful)

nilbog (732352) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195603)

The best way to fight spam is to go home and turn off your mom's zombie computer...

Re:The best way (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195649)

Duh, slashdotters are home, in the basement. That should be go *upstairs* and turn off their mom's zombie computer.

Re:The best way (1)

ravenspear (756059) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195793)

Or better yet, harden it so she can't be compromised again when she turns it back on.

Re:The best way (1, Troll)

Evil Adrian (253301) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195810)

No. Teach mom how to harden her computer, and how to maintain it. If she can't do that, she has no business using the Internet.

People that don't maintain their computers are like people that drive uninspected, unmaintained cars on public roads -- they're a danger to everyone around them.

Re:The best way (1)

ravenspear (756059) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195858)

Well, yeah.

But if she doesn't know how to harden a system then someone else will have to do it for her at least the first time.

Do you fix everything in your car (no matter how non-trivial) that breaks? No, you take it to a mechanic.

Educating people about securing their systems is one thing, but expecting everyone to become a security expert is quite another.

Re:The best way (1)

Taladar (717494) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195947)

But with cars people know how to recognize problems and when to take their car to the mechanic.

Re:The best way (1)

Donoho (788900) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195889)

No. Teach mom how to harden her computer, and how to maintain it. If she can't do that, she has no business using the Internet.

Nice thought, but you obviously haven't been in this situation. I once made the mistake of building my parents a system and realized the HELL that is tech support x100.

Will you also teach her to ignore the fear of new and different things? Will you teach her that it's okay to make mistakes and "break" things as long as she learns?

Been there, tried that, still haven't fully recovered.

Re:The best way (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195915)

Mom has some experience with hardending, or she wouldn't be mom.

Well... (2, Funny)

rasafras (637995) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195617)

A solid wooden stake usually does the trick. Make sure it's the heart, though...

Re:Well... (2, Insightful)

SirTalon42 (751509) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195903)

The groin generally gets the message through better.

Don't join the mob (4, Interesting)

IntenetStormCenter (843983) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195622)

The vigilante mob created by Lycos was nothing more then a publicity stunt gone wrong.

Cooperation and user persistance has pushed spam already to the fringes of the Internet. Spammers have to just compromissed machines and other criminal methods to spread their messages.

Making them a victim will only make it harder to push them out, and it will take away resources from the actual problem: People buy the crap offered by spam! Spam is no longer free. If people would just stop buying based on spam, the problem would solve itself.

Re:Don't join the mob (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195674)

The 'vigilante mob' analogy is right on. However was at the wrong end of a DDOS attack knows that they are not actually all that targeted and take out a lot of innocent bystanders.

Re:Don't join the mob (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195696)

the problem is spam is still cheap enough to be worthwhile

especially if there is downright fraud involved (ie not actually shipping the product)

spam can be profitable on return rates so low that only a tiny portion of the recipiants need to respond for it to work

No sympathy for the spammer... (3, Insightful)

Chordonblue (585047) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195725)

"...the actual problem: People buy the crap offered by spam! Spam is no longer free. If people would just stop buying based on spam, the problem would solve itself."

So what you are in effect saying is that people who hawk too-good-to-be-true investment schemes and storcks shouldn't be punished? People are gullible, people are going to continue to be taken in by their greed, ignorance, or even illness.

I think these parasites should be taken down. Whether you agree with Lycos or not, I commend them for at least bringing this possible solution to the spotlight.

Re:No sympathy for the spammer... (2, Insightful)

IntenetStormCenter (843983) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195750)

of course they should be taken down. And they are being taken down at faster and faster rates. But DDOSing them is the wrong way. First of all, you take down an ISP in addition to the spammer, but in addition the ISP may now have to help the spammer to defend itself in order to keep other innocent customers online.

Its important to keep the rules simple. Otherwise you will lose cooperation among ISPs. DDOS is bad. Spam is bad. Lets cooperated and stop both.

Re:Don't join the mob (1)

maskedbishounen (772174) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195737)

In addition to this, if you do join the mob, your ISP will likely kick you off for violating the Terms of Service.

It may not come right away, but as soon as some party, innocent or otherwise, gets hit and starts mailing ISPs, whoops. Your nice broadband pipe down the drain.

Re:Don't join the mob (1)

conteXXt (249905) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195941)

Really? I am not so sure it went wrong.

The intent of the screensaver was wrong (DOS) but the discussion that has ensued may yet reap results.

Change takes time.

Re:Don't join the mob (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195995)

"If people would just stop buying based on spam, the problem would solve itself."

Yes! Let's wait until we die!

Fight Spam with Spam! Spam Spam Spam (5, Funny)

Brainboy (310252) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195624)

I've been spamming the spammy spammers with my anti-spammer spammer. My spam scripts is well suited to spamming spammy spammers with spam. Spaming spammers is the best way to get them to stop spamming. Infact sometimes I use other spammer's spam to spam the spammers.

Now I'm off to eat my breakfast of spam, eggs, bacon, and spam.

Re:Fight Spam with Spam! Spam Spam Spam (1)

Sonicated (515345) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195719)

Now I'm off to eat my breakfast of spam, eggs, bacon, and spam.

Liar. We know that all you have in your kitchen is spam, spam, eggs, bacon, and spam with spam.

Re:Fight Spam with Spam! Spam Spam Spam (1)

cofaboy (718205) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195746)

there's not a lot of spam with that

Re:Fight Spam with Spam! Spam Spam Spam (1)

Joey Patterson (547891) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195924)

I've been spamming the spammy spammers with my anti-spammer spammer.

Oh, really? Well, I've been popping popups with my anti-popup popup and spying on spyware with my anti-spyware spyware!

Make it illegal. (5, Funny)

koreaman (835838) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195630)

Make spam illegal, that is the only real way to stop it.

Write your congressman, if you have some free time try to meet with one of them and lobby them. Few people know how remarkably easy it is to get your congressman to sit down and meet with you.

Re:Make it illegal. (4, Insightful)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195680)

Like making drugs illegal has stopped drug abuse.

Or like making identity theft illegal has stopped phishing scams.

Or how making unauthorized access to a computer illegal has stopped spam coming from compromised machines.

Re:Make it illegal. (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195709)

Like making drugs illegal has stopped drug abuse.
Or like making identity theft illegal has stopped phishing scams.
Or how making unauthorized access to a computer illegal has stopped spam coming from compromised machines.


Well duh, we need to just make it illegal to do illegal things!

Re:Make it illegal. (2, Funny)

FatRatBastard (7583) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195900)

And now that handguns are illegal shootings in DC have all but disappeared....

Re:Make it illegal. (1)

msmercenary (837876) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195690)

Make spam illegal, that is the only real way to stop it.

Yeah, cause that worked so well with prohibition, the war on drugs, anti-smoking legislation, and copyright lawsuits.

Re:Make it illegal. (1)

JesseL (107722) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195700)

Yeah! it worked for drugs, didn't it?

The real "only real way" to stop spam is to make it unprofitable. Don't ask me how though.

Re:Make it illegal. (4, Funny)

flyingsquid (813711) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195717)

Write your congressman

You mean we should flood their mailboxes with offers for viagra and penis enlargement?

Re:Make it illegal. (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195733)

I disagree. Spam already is illegal, at both the Federal and many state levels, but that means nothing if the rest of the world doesn't take similar steps. And it isn't. Spam is not a US-only problem: it crosses all national boundaries, and won't be cured by the passage of more laws. Ultimately, there are only two solutions: convince people not to click on spam links (unlikely), or implement a technological solution. But those suffer from the same problems as the legal/diplomatic approach, that is, if they aren't done on a large enough scale they won't have any effect.

Re:Make it illegal. (1)

slungsolow (722380) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195741)

Write your congressman

I don't think my congressman has alot of clout in african countries that are run by warlords.

Re:Make it illegal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195783)

We should just cut Africa off until they get their shit together.

Same goes for Russia and China.

Enough of the spam, enough of the Nigerian scams, enough of the Russian Bride scams, etc.

I work for a dating site and over 99% of the traffic that comes to our site from IPs in those regions is using a stolen credit card and/or running some kind of scheme.

Re:Make it illegal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195857)

Yeah right. You do realise most spam originates from the US?

Re:Make it illegal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195813)

Note: *a lot* is two words.

Yeah... Murder is illegal too... (2, Insightful)

Chordonblue (585047) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195753)

...but it still happens, sometimes almost unchecked in foreign countries. How is this really going to help unless you target the companies USING spam to hawk their goods?

The spammers are a symptom of a much larger problem. Don't get me wrong - I wouldn't mind seeing them strung up too - but I'd rather see the CEO of some penis enlarging / Viagra-distributing company do some hard time with big guys...

Re:Make it illegal. (1)

KennyP (724304) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195802)

But...

OI DON'T LOIK SPAM!!!!

Kenny P.
Visualize Whirled P.'s

-1, Power Sucking Holiday Bling Bling (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195644)

n/t.

No joke here! (1, Funny)

overbyj (696078) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195652)

I, for one, truly do welcome our new spamfighting overlords!

I don't punish spam. (4, Insightful)

Man in Spandex (775950) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195659)

SPAM punishes itself by giving an "evil" image for their company.

Best way to punish spam is by keeping your friends AND foes aware of what to not pay attention. In the end, hopefully, they'll make less profit. Nonviolence resistance demands patience and is a slow process but always shows progression.

Re:I don't punish spam. (2, Interesting)

wwahammy (765566) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195738)

I agree with nonviolence resistance and am a firm believer in it but I think using these people's bandwidth is the epitome of nonviolent resistance. You basically bother someone till they HAVE to change something (i.e.: SCLC's bus boycott, Gandhi's march to the sea, etc.) Of course I don't htink the term for this is nonviolent resistance because that really is for something much more serious but that concept fits.

Re:I don't punish spam. (1)

SirTalon42 (751509) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195990)

So DDoSing would be classified as 'nonviolent'?

DDoS attacks screw up everyone on the line from each distributed client to the target, the closer you are to the target the more you will be screwed over.

Often times the web site that is linked to by the spam is a virtual host, i.e. not a dedicated server, so in addition to everyone in the line to them, you also take down all their other virtual hosts. The spammer may of not even been doing anything wrong on that site since more likely than not it was NOT sending out the spam so the hoster would have no reason to cancel their service.

Spamvampire works (5, Interesting)

DogDude (805747) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195672)

I use Spamvampire almost constantly. It works great. It sucks up their bandwidth, and while it doesn't DOS them, it does make the business of spam a hell of a lot less financially viable. I regularly pound on spammer sites (the sites actually selling the garbage) for a few days, then the site dies. Now, there's no way to know if it's because these sites are only designed to be live for a week or so at a time, or if I really am hitting them in the pocketbook, but I'd like to think that it works. At the VERY least, it makes me feel better knowing that somebody is going to be very shocked when they see their bandwith bill at the end of the month. And, the info that the guy who wrote the SmapVampire scripts concerning the 97% billing is very true, so the results he describes are actually quite realistic.

Re:Spamvampire works (1)

Tacky the Penguin (553526) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195888)

I use Spamvampire almost constantly. It works great. It sucks up their bandwidth

So, if I want to DDOS someone, I send out a bunch of spam that has their IP address as the 'buy' link. Then, all the vigilantes do the work for me.

Re:Spamvampire works (3, Informative)

Matt Perry (793115) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195925)

I use Spamvampire almost constantly. It works great. It sucks up their bandwidth, and while it doesn't DOS them, it does make the business of spam a hell of a lot less financially viable.
Wouldn't local, transparent HTTP proxies put in place by ISPs, such as DSL and dialup providers, prevent SpamVampire from being effective?

Spam including URLs (1)

jerometremblay (513886) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195675)

Fully load the pages they link in the spam, including images and everything. Not only will this give you more meat to grind with your spam filter, it will drive the spammers web hosting crazy.

Re:Spam including URLs - Target Acquisition (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195745)

Why not just hose sites on current antispyware hosts & blocked urls lists? Everyone has them & some spare bandwidth. More satisfying than SETI in short term.

Just a thought.

Unsolicited Commando (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195681)

Nice tool to jam spammers...http://www.astrobastards.net/uc/

My solution (5, Funny)

nizo (81281) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195686)

What are you doing that you think is effective in punishing spammers or their spam-site sponsors?

Sending xmas cards to inmates about to be released from prisons in their state with the spammers name and home address as the return address with sincere hopes that they will come visit once they get out. Plus I get to use up all these extra xmas cards instead of packing them away for next year.

Wouldn't that be great? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195823)

Dear Prisoner #5514147:

I, Steven Ralsky, would like to thank you on the eve of your release from Pelican Bay State Prison. We and the missus would just like to tell you that we're sure you had nothing to do with strangling those 16 nuns, and your conviction with regards to that nasty cannibalism charge is surely bogus. We refuse to believe any of those charges about your indiscretions with those farm animals, either. Can you believe they called it rape? Philistines!

In any event, if you'd like to stop by someday for tea, please do so. Don't bother to knock- just come on in. Oh- the alarm system is broken, and my gout's been acting up, so I can't defend myself very well. Too much of the high life, you understand!

Sincerely yours,

Alan M. Ralsky

6747 Minnow Pond Dr.

West Bloomfield, MI 48322

Re:My solution (1)

anamexis (753041) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195910)

Better yet, send cards to soon-to-be-released inmates telling them that they need penile enhancement, and then provide the home address!

Turn images off (3, Informative)

Neil Blender (555885) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195688)

Turn images off. And filter on <img src=. And tell your Mom to.

Re:Turn images off (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195873)

Shlashdot should img src a few of thier sites...that might be fun to watch :)

Stop buying spamervertised products (1, Redundant)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195693)

Otherwise for every spammer ... removed, there will be ten new spammers to take its' place.

Re:Stop buying spamervertised products (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195972)

But I have stopped.

Two approaches.. ban buying, hit the websites (5, Interesting)

speculatrix (678524) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195704)

Why don't we consider the complete opposite: make it illegal to buy from spammers - kill the revenue stream, kill the spammer's business, stop the spam.

Another method is to hit the spammer's website... consider this perl fragment:
while (1)
{
  • $sock = new IO::Socket::INET (

    • Proto => 'tcp',

    • PeerAddr => 'website',
      PeerPort => '80',
      Reuse => 1
    );
    $sock->autoflush(1);
    push @sockArray, $sock;
}

Naturally, the above code is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be used in anger :-)

Re:Two approaches.. ban buying, hit the websites (1)

Shut the fuck up! (572058) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195732)

Interesting...Now, consider this perl fragment:

print "SHUT THE FUCK UP, YOU FUCKING HIPPY!\n";

Re:Two approaches.. ban buying, hit the websites (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11196009)

Couldn't work. Imagine I send spam email on behalf of my competitor. Wow, suddenly people are being charged for buying from my competitor, leaving the market open for me. Just couldn't work.

fitting quote (2, Funny)

LiquidMind (150126) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195707)

"...What are you doing that you think is effective in punishing spammers or their spam-site sponsors?"

what better solution than this one found at bash.org (source [bash.org] )

"i'm going to become rich and famous after i invent a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet"

Post URLs here (5, Funny)

Quixote (154172) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195713)

and this motley crew shall /. into oblivion...

Re:Post URLs here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11196005)

66.35.250.150

A hypothetical... (4, Funny)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195716)

If a spammer and a phisher were both drowning in a pool, and you only had enough time to save one, would get lunch or go for a walk?

Re:A hypothetical... (1)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195803)

I'd get lunch *and* go for a walk. I've got time enough to do both of those.

Re:A hypothetical... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195836)

If I had to save one, then I would pick spammer. At least they don't steal your money, unlike a phisher. One can always hit delete on their spam messages knowing they saved a human.

What about - (3, Interesting)

thewldisntenuff (778302) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195718)

Forcing ISPs to turn off/temporarily disable the accounts of zombied, 0wned, computers? Isnt that where most of the spam comes from? How much spam could be stopped that way?

Doesnt have to be permanent, just cut it off and request the user run ad-aware/spybot/a decent virus scan and away they go......

-thewldisntenuff

Re:What about - (1)

subl33t (739983) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195868)

I work in the Acceptable Use Dept of an ISP. The VAST majority of spam complaints we get are tracked to customers with 0wned (trojaned) b0xen who aren't aware of the fact. ISPs generally don't/can't support any 3rd party software of any kind, like anti-trojan programs, and so the customers are left on their own to solve the problem.
This naturally is very annoying to the customers who often will not do anything about it until we have contacted them numerous times or we suspend their service.
We try our best to educate the customers on computer security and best-practice but for newbies this is fairly daunting.
Just telling everyone to ignore spam is a noble idea but there are always suckers who can't resist a 'bargain'. I believe the anti-spam fight should be more pro-active, flood the spamvertised sites with so much info it isn't feasible to process it all. Unfortunately, unless there is a better thought-out anti-spam screensaver (or a similar automated process) this would have to be an underground movement.

Re:What about - (2, Interesting)

maskedbishounen (772174) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195895)

And then half of their users will, if I can use the term here, /. the telephone system trying to get through to their ISP, demanding to know how, what, and why. If you thought tech support jobs at ISPs were bad before, just you wait...

Still, if properly implemented, it's a great idea. Instead of cutting them off, drop any repeated, zombie-looking packets. Anything else, redirect it to a local site hosted by the ISP, for customers only.

It should read something along the line of..

"Our monitoring system has indicated that your computer has been infected with an internet virus, trojan, or worm. To prevent any harm to your privacy, computer, and personal information, we have temporarily disabled your account.

To clear this up as quickly as possible, below we have a wide ranging list of detection programs and simple instructions on how to clean up most problems. If you need further help, please use the form below of contact our support at ..."

Basically, forcing self-help to those that need it. Seems a whole lot better than "call us after you're secure" to me.

Re:What about - (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195975)

That's exactly what the ISP I mentioned does - see http://www.plus.net/virusnotification.html

It explains the situation, and offers advice on what to do next. But I think monitoring every packet sent would create too much work - at the moment it just sees that the user is trying to contact another PC on a certain port, and acts on it.

Re:What about - (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195917)

This would only really work if ALL ISPs did it. Otherwise people might moan about their ISP, and just switch to another which doesn't have these sort of precautions.

My ISP actively blocks ports 135, 139 and 445 - and any activity on them results in the user's access being blocked (except to a page explaining what has happened). However, I guess spam isn't really as clear-cut as port activity.

Whatever (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195721)

was extremely well received despite the whines and hand wringing from the no-one-should-ever-actively-defend-themselves crowd

Yeah, it was so well recieved they pulled it without a trace after what, two days? Three?

It's a boneheaded scheme that creates many more problems than it solves. Imagine a spammer finding a dopey judge to give him a multi-million dollar settlement against lycos.. That'd sure teach him a lesson!

The whole scheme is as easy to get around as changing IPs.

Anyhow, I have a new plan. I'm going to drive 90mph on YOUR sidewalk because I have a problem with people driving like idiots. I encourage everyone else to do the same. Get drunk, do donuts in other peoples lawns, take out their fences. Run over their pets - hell, kill a few kids! That'll sure teach people that they should be more responsible when they drive.

Respond to them (4, Interesting)

Stephen Samuel (106962) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195722)

This is especially usefull for things like Mortage sites.

Give them info that at least looks real.
If you give them your real phone number, then you can keep them on the phone line for 1/2hour (if you've got a headset), while you play your favorite game.... then tell them you hate spammers.

Even if you don't give them your real time, it forces them to verify the data. People pay for info from those spams because it's mostly good data. from people who want mortages.

If you keep the S/N ratio from spams higher than random cold-calling, then the spam's useless.

For stuff like cheap viagra, it's mostly an attempt to get them to annoy their credit card company. or just wasting their time. If we (slashdot) can each get spammers to waste 10 seconds of their time, that's some number of spammer man-years. If we can each get them to waste 10 seconds a week, they're out of business.

It's using the statistics of spamming against them. They currently get about 1million-1 response ratio with a very high signal-noise ratio. If we can get that up to 1000-1 with a 1-1000 signal-noise ratio, then they'll drown in their own garpage.

fight back (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11195752)

I still believe that if people believe in fighting spam they should make the sponsers waste as much time and engergy that we go through wading through it. We should have servers on OC48 connections with web front ends on where you can submit a spam and have it hit the websites constantly for the same amount of "charge" that it cost to receive and cpu cycles to process the spam.

wget+bash + SPAM = Fun (4, Interesting)

cluge (114877) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195764)

Or

LWP + PERL + SPAM = Fun

Take your pick, for something simple like a website that is hosted on compromised machines, simply loop the address through wget, use the output of ps -aux | grep wget | wc -l to keep the system load down to something reasonable - like 50.

Another fun game is when the spammer/phisher wants some personal information. Use LWP to walk through the order stages or web pages. Then give them the information that they asked for.

Name - Don't you know
Address - don't you wish you knew
City - not yet
State - that one
zip - 12345-678

Special order instructions:

Don't ever e-mail me again, ever, please. I'm begging you. In fact I'll be nice, i'll only send this very same message once for each attempted spam delivery. So far the machine that delivered this message has also made 150,000 connections, to try and deliver messages to users that don't exist.

Add random garbage to through off simply filters. Rinse and repeat until messages stop coming to you

Using the host command, with the name servers that show up in the whois. Walk the dns. It's trivial to repeat until server stops responding. Especially if the server is another zombie.

Tactics usually prove good at stopping sites hosted on compromised broadband connections. These machines generally have upload limits that run out quick. Sites hosted in China or Russia seem to have more bandwidth and can take more of a load. I only know this because I read around. I would never, ever advocate such a thing as returning the spam I receive to the spammer via his web sites order page. Doing what is suggested would probably get you in trouble.

My solution? Baseball bats, but my lawyer has told me that they may be illegal as well.

cluge

So it depends on who is doing it? (2, Insightful)

the angry liberal (825035) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195801)

The now-defunct Lycos anti-spamsite screen saver, MakeLoveNotSpam, was extremely well received despite the whines and hand wringing from the no-one-should-ever-actively-defend-themselves crowd

Yeah, um, right. Say the same thing in regards to the RIAA trying to prevent music piracy and you'll hear endless howls from the /. crowd about how hacking/DDoS is illegal and should be a punishable crime.

If you want anyone to remotely take you seriously, you will have to first drop the double-standard.

Cost balance (1)

booch (4157) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195806)

I don't see this as being a retribution. The spammers use our network resources to send us URLs that they want us to click on. In exchange, they want some of the recipients to click on the URLs and buy their wares. If every spam recipient were to go to those web sites, the whole balance of sending "free" bulk commercial emails becomes not so free.

I think that if it's the recipient who is (automatically) pulling down the web sites pointed to by the URLs, then this could not be considered retribution. If instead, one site has a whole bunch of people hitting the web pages, then it maybe could be considered to be retribution.

snail-mail spam right back at ya! (4, Interesting)

Pretbek (600867) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195826)

Posting the physical address of a spammer on /. and asking people to "please not sign him up for all the snailmail-spam you can find because that is so impolite" seems to have worked well in the past. Well, it worked at annoying the spammer, that is. I don't know if the amount of sent spam actually declined.

How to stop spam... ? (1)

pdboddy (620164) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195828)

Easy really. Either smack all the idjits buying CRAP from spammers (this could work well for the ones clicking on the viruses in their emails too), or make sure every congressman and woman, every senator, every governor, every legislative member, basically everyone at every level of government gets as much spam as Bill Gates. Of course, getting leaders and parliament members of other countries signed up to spam email lists will hasten the demise of spammers, since the US wouldn't be forced to invade to remove the spammers... ;P

Re:How to stop spam... ? (1)

pdboddy (620164) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195846)

Heh, as an addendum, getting the Chairman, and say, the top 20 most important people in China spammed to heck would help shut down those spam operations in China...

Hand Wringing (3, Insightful)

fm6 (162816) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195863)

MakeLoveNotSpam, was extremely well received despite the whines and hand wringing from the no-one-should-ever-actively-defend-themselves crowd.
Hand wringing? Like all vigilantes, you love to emphasis your own macho attitude and the supposed wimpiness of your detractors. Whereas the real issue is the collatoral damage.

Don't "unsubscribe"... (2, Informative)

skammie (802503) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195881)

among other things in the spam that you already get. Use Thunderbird for your email. It turns off images in email by default, so you can delete those unwanted emails. Use fake info, or use BugMeNot when you need to register for news sites. Run Ad-Aware at least once a week. Install a good anti-virus program, and scan for virii weekly. Don't sign up for contests. Resist the tempation to smack the monkey. You won't get a free anything. Don't give out your real email. Use a Yahoo, Hotmail, or Gmail account. Use Firefox with Adblock or Nuke Anything extensions, or both. Just don't fucking click on those ad-banners. You don't need Bonzai Buddy!!! arrrgh

Don't even ignore spam. (1)

AtomicJake (795218) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195932)

Don't even ignore spam.

Seriously. ;-)

No war, no innovation (2, Insightful)

seachnasaigh (835440) | more than 9 years ago | (#11195957)

The Lycos thing was an interesting sortee, but on a day-to-day basis? I'll keep doing what I do now: learn, build better filters, make it harder for the stuff to get through, defeat the purpose, drive their numbers down a fraction. I'm a systems admin; my users don't see much spam, largely because I've spent months tweaking the filters to stop it, building better code into my SpamAssassin, etc. Does it annoy me? Not really. It keeps me employed, and it makes me think, actually. A wise man once said, rather coldly, that without war there would be no innovation. (I'm paraphrasing). Largely, that's true I think ... though he didn't say anyone had to actually be killed. This is a war; spam, phishing, viruses ... they've made us all grow up, realise that the 'net isn't a toy any more, and stretch ourselves just a bit to make it safer, faster, etc. Yes, this doesn't help your Mum's computer, but one day it will. I'm not going to say spam is good, but I will say I think it was inevitable, and that our reaction to it can in fact turn out to be beneficial.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?