Unsolicited email – It’s on the rise, just like junk mail through the post office. Unfortunately, with all the free email accounts available there’s no postage required, and no central “don’t send me junk email” database of email addresses.
To get our email servers to recognize incoming junk email we’d need to teach them to recognize the difference between “Want to Make Some Good Money?” sent from a spammer, and your friend offering you a job. Even Star Trek computers would balk at the request. If we blocked the source email server, we’d be blocking all of yahoo.com, hotmail.com, and aol.com just to name three.
How does your email address get on such a list? Are you on any email mailing lists? Have you ever sent email to a mailing list or news group? Has a friend of yours included one of your emails in a posting to a mailing list or news group? Can your email address be found in any email directory? Some examples are CC’s email directory, Yahoo’s, the alumni listing for your college or high school – there are lots of others. I’m sure someone out there is paying hackers a few cents per email address to collect them and store them on a spammer web site. Most of the SPAM I’ve received in the last few days have gotten my email address from some source other than CC – it’s been sent to a bunch of email addresses starting with “K” from all different organizations.
Why does the “reply with remove in the subject” not work? The account is removed as soon as one person complains to the postmaster of an email system used to send out the spam. All subsequent email to that account is bounced. It’s not much of a punishment when they can immediately sign up for another free account and send the same message out again.