Questions about spam.

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by tutorny@gmail.com, Mar 26, 2007.

  1. Guest

    Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    for illegal spam. I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal, or
    even considered spam. I always thought that spamming involved using
    automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.

    Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    scam. But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work. As soon as I got
    the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    deleted the messages through google groups.

    I have the following questions -

    1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    if it can work).

    2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?
    What about the messages that I get through various forums? The
    particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    I've come to trust.

    3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?

    I've never committed any such offenses, and I obviously don't want to
    start now.

    Thanks so much for your advice.
     
    , Mar 26, 2007
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. John Holmes Guest

    "contributed" in 24hoursupport.helpdesk:

    > Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    > for illegal spam. I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal, or
    > even considered spam. I always thought that spamming involved using
    > automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.
    >
    > Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    > scam. But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    > newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work. As soon as I got
    > the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    > deleted the messages through google groups.
    >
    > I have the following questions -
    >
    > 1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    > get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    > illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    > sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    > if it can work).
    >
    > 2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?
    > What about the messages that I get through various forums? The
    > particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    > I've come to trust.
    >
    > 3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    > reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?
    >
    > I've never committed any such offenses, and I obviously don't want to
    > start now.
    >
    > Thanks so much for your advice.
    >
    >


    Complaint sent to

    --
    Your mother was a foreign gypsy who drank heavily under the sink.
     
    John Holmes, Mar 26, 2007
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Guest

    On Mar 26, 1:26 pm, John Holmes <> wrote:
    > "contributed" in 24hoursupport.helpdesk:


    I completely don't understand. Did I ask the wrong question, or is
    this the wrong forum?
     
    , Mar 26, 2007
    #3
  4. Aardvark Guest

    On Mon, 26 Mar 2007 09:36:27 -0700, tutorny wrote:

    > Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    > for illegal spam. I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal,


    Well, you won't do that again, will you? Ignorance of the law is no
    defence.

    >or
    > even considered spam. I always thought that spamming involved using
    > automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.
    >


    Unsolicited Commercial Email (spam for short) is, as it says, commercial
    email that wasn't asked for. Even if you sent it to a good friend or even
    a family member and they haven't given you prior permission to send it to
    them, it's spam by definition. Spam can be one million emails sent
    automatically or one email sent manually.

    > Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    > scam. But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    > newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work. As soon as I got
    > the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    > deleted the messages through google groups.
    >


    It'll probably still be there for all the world to see (at least those of
    us who use newsreaders) for some time to come.

    > I have the following questions -
    >
    > 1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    > get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    > illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    > sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    > if it can work).
    >


    No resources needed. If it looks too good to be true, it is. As a matter
    of principle I will never buy or sign up for anything that I haven't
    specifically searched for myself.

    > 2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?


    Not much

    > What about the messages that I get through various forums? The
    > particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    > I've come to trust.
    >


    Ignore them.

    > 3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    > reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?
    >


    That'd be a really bad idea. Unless of course you have another ISP waiting
    in the wings to take you on when your present ISP drops you like a hot
    potato.

    > I've never committed any such offenses, and I obviously don't want to
    > start now.


    Seems you dabbled your toes in those murky waters but didn't take the final
    plunge. BTW 'offence' is not spelled with an 's'. Come to think of it,
    neither is 'defence' (waste of time telling an American I know, but what
    the **** :) )

    >
    > Thanks so much for your advice.



    Right! Now that all the breast-beating and 'mea culpa' shit is over can we
    all just get on with our lives?



    --
    Registered Linux User 413057.
    Both Mandriva 2007 and Ubuntu 6.06
    You can have it all. My empire of hurt.
     
    Aardvark, Mar 26, 2007
    #4
  5. WhzzKdd Guest

    <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    > for illegal spam. I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal, or
    > even considered spam. I always thought that spamming involved using
    > automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.
    >
    > Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    > scam. But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    > newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work. As soon as I got
    > the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    > deleted the messages through google groups.
    >
    > I have the following questions -
    >
    > 1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    > get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    > illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    > sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    > if it can work).
    >


    If it SOUNDS too good to be true, it is. Also, try www.snopes.com, and
    contact the companies that are involved to find out what THEY have to say.

    > 2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?
    > What about the messages that I get through various forums? The
    > particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    > I've come to trust.
    >

    You need to learn how to report the abuse to the authorities at the sending
    end. Telling your ISP is going to do nothing: they only receive the crap -
    someone else sent it.

    > 3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    > reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?
    >

    Unless your ISP contacts you to follow-up on the complaint, I wouldn't
    stress out over it.

    > I've never committed any such offenses, and I obviously don't want to
    > start now.
    >
    > Thanks so much for your advice.
    >
     
    WhzzKdd, Mar 26, 2007
    #5
  6. Aardvark Guest

    On Mon, 26 Mar 2007 19:26:41 +0200, John Holmes wrote:

    > "contributed" in 24hoursupport.helpdesk:
    >
    >> Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    >> for illegal spam. I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal, or
    >> even considered spam. I always thought that spamming involved using
    >> automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.
    >>
    >> Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    >> scam. But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    >> newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work. As soon as I got
    >> the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    >> deleted the messages through google groups.
    >>
    >> I have the following questions -
    >>
    >> 1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    >> get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    >> illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    >> sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    >> if it can work).
    >>
    >> 2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?
    >> What about the messages that I get through various forums? The
    >> particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    >> I've come to trust.
    >>
    >> 3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    >> reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?
    >>
    >> I've never committed any such offenses, and I obviously don't want to
    >> start now.
    >>
    >> Thanks so much for your advice.
    >>
    >>

    >
    > Complaint sent to
    >


    LOL That's nasty.

    --
    Registered Linux User 413057.
    Both Mandriva 2007 and Ubuntu 6.06
    You can have it all. My empire of hurt.
     
    Aardvark, Mar 26, 2007
    #6
  7. Mike Easter Guest

    wrote:
    > Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    > for illegal spam.


    Below it sounds like you fell for and propagated some kind of
    chainletter scam/spam. It is illegal and it is usenet spam -- altho' I
    haven't found the/your example yet.

    http://www.usps.com/postalinspectors/fraud/chainlet.htm U.S. Postal
    Inspectors investigate any crime in which the U.S. Mail is used to
    further a scheme--whether it originated in the mail, by telephone, or on
    the Internet.

    > I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal, or
    > even considered spam.


    There is all kinds of spam which is very much spam but not illegal,
    there is all kinds of illegal that is very much illegal but not spam,
    and there is all kinds of illegal spam.

    > I always thought that spamming involved using
    > automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.


    Just because your style of doing something wrong isn't the same as
    someone else's style of doing something wrong doesn't make it right.

    > Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    > scam.


    To be sure.

    > But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    > newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work.


    That is the illegal and spam part.

    > As soon as I got
    > the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    > deleted the messages through google groups.


    The google group deletion doesn't delete the messages which were
    propagated all over the world to newsservers and people's newsagents.

    > I have the following questions -
    >
    > 1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    > get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    > illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    > sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    > if it can work).


    Fundamentally, you should not be doing anything to benefit anything
    which has to do with email spam or usenet spam. Ideally you wouldn't
    even read it, much less think about responding to it.

    > 2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?


    Your ISP doesn't want to hear about your email spam.

    > What about the messages that I get through various forums? The
    > particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    > I've come to trust.


    If you use google for reading news, you have no way of filtering what
    you read. If you were using a real newsreader and a real newsagent
    filter, you could make the spamscam disappear.

    > 3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    > reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?


    It is generally against your provider's terms of service to be spamming
    or scamming or doing other illegal or rude activity.

    Columbia has a whole section of pages about what you should and
    shouldn't be doing at http://www.columbia.edu/cu/policy/ Columbia
    University maintains certain policies with regard to the use and
    security of its computer systems, networks and information resources.
    All users of these facilities are expected to be familiar with these
    policies and the consequences of violation.


    --
    Mike Easter
     
    Mike Easter, Mar 26, 2007
    #7
  8. Whiskers Guest

    On 2007-03-26, <> wrote:
    > Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    > for illegal spam. I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal, or
    > even considered spam. I always thought that spamming involved using
    > automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.
    >
    > Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    > scam. But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    > newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work. As soon as I got
    > the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    > deleted the messages through google groups.
    >
    > I have the following questions -
    >
    > 1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    > get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    > illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    > sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    > if it can work).


    <http://www.snopes.com/> <http://members.impulse.net/~thebob/Pyramid.html>
    <http://www.scambusters.org/>
    <http://antivirus.about.com/od/emailhoaxes/l/blenhoax.htm>

    > 2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?


    Don't bother, it has nothing to do with them. You could try complaining
    to the email service provider whose service was used to send the message
    (not the 'from' address; that is easily faked and proves nothing; learn to
    read the 'headers' of email and usenet messages).

    > What about the messages that I get through various forums?


    Look for 'Terms or Use' or similar notices, and 'contact us' or 'report
    abuse here' links, if you are in a web forum. In usenet newsgroups such
    as this one, you are on your own.

    > The
    > particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    > I've come to trust.


    Why would you trust stuff you chance across on a public web site where
    who-knows-who can post God-knows-what?

    They do seem to offer a personal 'block this user' option
    <http://www.43things.com/about/view/faq#block-a-user> but they don't seem
    to be interested in dealing with 'abuse reports' or 'complaints' - nor do
    they accept any responsibility for harm you may come to in connection with
    use of their site. See their 'Terms of Use' and 'Privacy Policy'. (Looks
    to me as though that particular operation is really a front for collecting
    information for use by 'marketing companies' such as Amazon, who appear to
    be the main investors).

    > 3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    > reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?
    >
    > I've never committed any such offenses, and I obviously don't want to
    > start now.
    >
    > Thanks so much for your advice.


    Wait and see if your ISP contacts you, or your internet connection stops
    working. From what you've said here, your ISP will probably put you down
    as 'just another sucker' and take no action unless they get lots of
    complaints about you doing the same sort of thing in lot of places.

    Whether what you did was 'illegal' depends on where you were when you did
    it, or which country's or state's laws apply to your contract with your
    ISP - it probaby wasn't illegal anywhere, but would be widely considered
    'a nuisance' and individuals might have chosen to add you to their
    personal list of 'blocked senders'. Particularly if you posted your dodgy
    messages in usenet newsgroups that you don't normally take part in.

    --
    -- ^^^^^^^^^^
    -- Whiskers
    -- ~~~~~~~~~~
     
    Whiskers, Mar 26, 2007
    #8
  9. Guest


    > Columbia has a whole section of pages about what you should and
    > shouldn't be doing athttp://www.columbia.edu/cu/policy/ Columbia
    > University maintains certain policies with regard to the use and
    > security of its computer systems, networks and information resources.
    > All users of these facilities are expected to be familiar with these
    > policies and the consequences of violation.


    Thank you very much for your advice.

    Columbia is my employer, and therefore my ISP at work, where I
    currently am. I am fully aware of the policies, and would never do
    anything to defy that. Work responsibilities leave little time for
    answering, or even reading, spam messages. Columbia also does a good
    job filtering messages for us.

    The ISP that I use at home is OptOnline. I'll check out their pages
    to see if they have any info.

    Thanks again.
     
    , Mar 26, 2007
    #9
  10. Tester Guest

    First, you should know that when you post through Google groups people
    can see your location. You are at 128.59.101.129 which belongs to
    Columbia University according to http://www.arin.net/whois

    (arin.net manages IP's in North America)

    If you were posting one of those chain letter-type schemes where you
    pay and then get paid primarily for recruiting new suckers into the
    scheme - that is called a "pyramid scam". It is illegal nearly
    everywhere in the world.

    If thousands pay one, then millions will pay thousands, billions (if
    it actually got that far) pay millions and the bulk of the suckers
    will be at the bottom of the pyramid and get cheated.

    It works for you if you start it and don't get caught.

    It doesn't really matter if something is being sold UNLESS it is being
    sold to people who aren't joining the scheme. The money picture
    doesn't change. No new money comes in except from new recruits and the
    scheme is doomed to collapse.

    There are legal multilevel schemes. For example, if you're an Avon
    saleslady (most of them are female) and you recruit a new Avon
    saleslady you will get paid a cut of your recruit's sales if your
    recruit is good at selling Avon cosmetics to cosmetic users.

    You are not getting paid because your recruit is good at recruiting
    new salesladies who are going to buy cosmetics as part of their
    membership kit who will recruit new salesladies who will...

    http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/nycodes/c44/a49.html

    New York State investment fraud laws including section 359-fff,
    banning the promotion of "chain distributor schemes". (e.g. chain
    letter postings)

    http://www.usps.com/websites/depart/inspect/fraud/chainlet.htm

    If you send the money through the U.S. mails, by the way, the Postal
    Inspection Service says it is an illegal lottery - you pay for what
    ammounts to a tiny chance to win lots of money.

    http://www.oag.state.ny.us/press/2007/feb/feb27a_07.html

    New York State Attorney General busts a pyramid scam in the Bronx.

    --
    Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com
     
    Tester, Mar 26, 2007
    #10
  11. Moe Szyslak Guest

    wrote:

    >Columbia is my employer, and therefore my ISP at work, where I
    >currently am. I am fully aware of the policies, and would never do
    >anything to defy that. Work responsibilities leave little time for
    >answering, or even reading, spam messages. Columbia also does a good
    >job filtering messages for us.



    I wonder if the policy allows you to peruse Usenet when you're
    supposed to be working. Did you think it was just a coincidence that
    Mike knew where you worked?
     
    Moe Szyslak, Mar 26, 2007
    #11
  12. Mara Guest

    On 26 Mar 2007 09:36:27 -0700, wrote:

    >Somebody emailed to tell me that they reported me to the authorities
    >for illegal spam. I didn't know that what I was doing was illegal, or
    >even considered spam. I always thought that spamming involved using
    >automatic ways of sending email to large quantities of people.
    >
    >Obviously, I should have done my research instead of falling for a
    >scam. But I wasn't thinking, and I forwarded message to several
    >newsgroups (4, to be exact) to see if it would work. As soon as I got
    >the reply saying that what I was doing was illegal, I immediately
    >deleted the messages through google groups.
    >
    >I have the following questions -
    >
    >1) What are some good resources for figuring out whether the various
    >get-rich schemes that we are constantly being emailed about are
    >illegal, or simply ineffective. (Obviously they are ineffective, but
    >sometimes the temptation is too great, and you just want to try to see
    >if it can work).


    http://www.scambusters.org/
    http://www.antiphishing.org/

    >2) What can I do to alert my ISP when I get such messages in email?
    >What about the messages that I get through various forums? The
    >particular one that I fell for was posted on "43 things" a forum that
    >I've come to trust.


    http://www.claws-and-paws.com/spam-l/tracking.html
    http://spam.abuse.net/

    >3) Should I get in touch with my ISP and let them know that somebody
    >reported me for spam? What are the repercussions?


    If you sent it, you *did* spam. Honesty is the best policy. You could well lose
    your account, as well as land your host into blocklists. Not a good thing. Tell
    them - and don't do it again.

    >I've never committed any such offenses, and I obviously don't want to
    >start now.


    Excellent. Now go, and spam no more.

    >Thanks so much for your advice.


    --
    There's nothing in life so difficult that a Microsoft manual can't make it
    completely incomprehensible. -- Douglas Adams
     
    Mara, Mar 27, 2007
    #12
  13. Guest

    > I wonder if the policy allows you to peruse Usenet when you're
    > supposed to be working. Did you think it was just a coincidence that
    > Mike knew where you worked?


    He didn't know where I worked, just where I posted that message from.
    I understand how email headers (and the host command) work. I don't
    believe that it's against any university policy to browse Usenet on
    the network. Nor is it against any internal policy, as far as I am
    aware. I'll be sure to check.

    Thanks to all for clarifying many things on this issue.
     
    , Mar 27, 2007
    #13
  14. said in news:1174930399.066172.112100
    @y66g2000hsf.googlegroups.com:

    > On Mar 26, 1:26 pm, John Holmes <> wrote:
    >> "contributed" in 24hoursupport.helpdesk:

    >
    > I completely don't understand. Did I ask the wrong question, or is
    > this the wrong forum?


    He was fucking with you, dimwit.
     
    Flaxseed Bigwhopper, Mar 27, 2007
    #14
  15. Guest

    > He was fucking with you, dimwit.

    I don't understand why people on these groups tend to be so mean. Why
    isn't it satisfying enough just to help somebody? Why does an insult
    have to accompany every answer? Thanks anyway, to those who provided
    useful info.
     
    , Mar 27, 2007
    #15
  16. John Holmes Guest

    "contributed" in 24hoursupport.helpdesk:

    >> I wonder if the policy allows you to peruse Usenet when you're
    >> supposed to be working. Did you think it was just a coincidence that
    >> Mike knew where you worked?

    >
    > He didn't know where I worked, just where I posted that message from.
    > I understand how email headers (and the host command) work. I don't
    > believe that it's against any university policy to browse Usenet on
    > the network. Nor is it against any internal policy, as far as I am
    > aware. I'll be sure to check.
    >
    > Thanks to all for clarifying many things on this issue.
    >


    Abuse report sent to
    Just kiss your account (and maybe even your job as I hope) goodbye, you
    dumb ****.

    --
    Your mother was an unforgiving taxi-driver who sold herself in a
    munitions factory.
     
    John Holmes, Mar 27, 2007
    #16
  17. Robb Guest

    tutorny wrote:

    >I don't understand why people on these groups tend to be so mean. Why
    >isn't it satisfying enough just to help somebody? Why does an insult
    >have to accompany every answer? Thanks anyway, to those who provided
    >useful info.


    Thank you for asking! Fu*kwit.

    --
    Robb
     
    Robb, Mar 27, 2007
    #17
  18. John Holmes Guest

    Robb "contributed" in 24hoursupport.helpdesk:

    > tutorny wrote:
    >
    >>I don't understand why people on these groups tend to be so mean. Why
    >>isn't it satisfying enough just to help somebody? Why does an insult
    >>have to accompany every answer? Thanks anyway, to those who provided
    >>useful info.

    >
    > Thank you for asking! Fu*kwit.
    >


    "****" or "fuckwit" are words that are allowed in this froup, amongst
    other insults. Read the charter.

    --
    Your mother was a money-grabbing wino who ran a successful dating agency
    in an inflatable dingy.
     
    John Holmes, Mar 28, 2007
    #18
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