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  1. #1
    Uranium Lounger
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    SpamMotel - best solution yet

    I forgot whether I read this in NNT or Naked PC, but I've been using SPAMMOTEL. This is a great way to end spam. Basically, you download a free front end, that connects you to their site. Their site generates email addresses on demand. Whenever you have to fill out a form, buy something, register on a website, you generate a unique email address, with a one liner that tells you what it's for.

    All email goes to their website, which forwards the email to your true email address. If you start getting spam, you go to their site & delete the email address. It works best, of course, if you get rid of your old email addresses & start fresh. You can find it at http://www.spammotel.com.

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  3. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Sounds an awful lot like Sneakemail. I've been using that myself, and it looks as though the principle is the same. Now I'm going to have to give SM a whirl to see if it's better!
    -Mark

  4. #3
    5 Star Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    It also sounds a lot like the service I use - Spamgourmet. Create disposable email addresses on the fly whenever they are needed. Since I started using it some time ago they've also added a handy feature that allows replies to be sent back through their service, for when a site needs an email confirmation. Reply from your own mail program and the message goes to Spamgourmet first, where the headers are re-written (yes, it looks like a forged header) before being sent on to the intended recipient.

    One interesting point though, is that so far I have not had any indication that these bogus addresses have gotten into circulation beyond who I had originally given them to. Good luck in only dealing with respectible sites? Since I dumped Yahoo my spam count has dropped to almost none. <img src=/S/groovin.gif border=0 alt=groovin width=21 height=21>

  5. #4
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Oh, I did get a chance to test it.... <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15> Some fella in China wanted me to buy high quality gears. Evidentlyhe had combed my email address from a forum on the website, since I had posted a few comments here and there. Haven't heard from him since, and I notified the site that this fool was collecting email addresses from them.
    -Mark

  6. #5
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Mark ~

    <IMG SRC=http://www.krymow.com/images/icon_spam.gif> Regarding theses spam 'filter' options, it seems that it may be a lot of extra hassle to go through what doesn't seem to amount to that much. I am getting that you use these apps for one-maybe-two times to fill out forms on the web then dump the address from the host site once spam arrives, yes? Is it really worth the effort and time to generate, keep track of, manage, and delete these addresses? Isn't it about the same amount of time spent but at the front end? Now, by comparison, I guess I don't receive that much junk, just perhaps 20 or so a day of your garden variety porn, mortgage and 'free' stuff. I rarely sign up for anything - how else are they procuring my address? How do you address the issue of those you may require contact from w/ a particular address if you delete it due to spam receipt, especially if you have really no idea of what address you used for whoever on whichever day??

  7. #6
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Lemme give you a taste of something I did. For the past two NFL seasons, I participated in a fantasy league at Sandbox.Com and I suppose I'll do it again this year (soon). I LOVE playing fantasy NFL football! Since I had been warned ahead of time, I setup a pseudo email address at my alhoffman.org domain and filtered it to vaporize. Well, both seasons I received an average of 20 to 30 emails a DAY at that address, from a ton of peddlers and you can't even contact Sandbox.Com to complain about their giving away/selling of email addresses. This year, I'll probably use Mailwasher to "bounce" those messages and see what happens.

    I realize this has no relevance to anything sane, I just wanted to get it off my chest! Whenever I buy something through a vendor on the internet, or am otherwise required to "register" at some web site (like the Chcago Tribune) I ALWAYS use one of my pseudo email addresses, so that If I start getting a lot of spam to that address, not only do I vaporize it, but I know to STAY AWAY from that web site in the future. It does NO GOOD to complain to anyone or any site! When I first started to use The Lounge, I put in an email address of AEH_WOPR@ALHOFFMAN.ORG but I realized right away that that wasn't necessary! Obviously!

  8. #7
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Bruce, I've suggested these tools to others because spam is a real pain in the rear for many people, and it could be of use to someone else. I can't say if the effort is worth it or not. I don't get a lot of spam because I take steps to prevent my main email address from getting out there to begin with.

    That doesn't mean I'm safe, though. Spammers harvest e-mail addresses from:

    <UL><LI>Fooling you when you click "click here to unsubscribe"
    <LI>Scripts that run in HTML mail and shout out "got a live one here"
    <LI>Chat rooms, discussion forums, Web sites, portals.
    <LI>AOL user profile lists.
    <LI>Corporate Web site e-mail directories.
    <LI>Internet white/yellow pages.
    <LI>CD-ROM list purchases.
    <LI>Trading and selling.
    <LI>Pinging mail list servers to request mailing lists.
    <LI>Extracting addresses from Web browsers via anonymous FTP or Java script.
    <LI>Using an Ident daemon or Internet Relay Chat client.
    <LI>Chain letters hoaxes that require a reply to get a free gift.
    <LI>Headers that browsers send to the Web server visited.
    <LI>Finger daemons that query for logon names of specific users on that host.
    <LI>Guessing addresses, then monitoring for returned mail and errors.
    <LI>Using software that auto-generates e-mail addresses (john@xyz.com, johna@xyz.com, johnb@xyz.com).
    <LI>Modifying mail headers to request a delivery confirmation from the mail system or client.
    <LI>Removing protective phrases added to e-mail addresses to avert harvesting.[/list]And this list will change tomorrow, next month, and next year. There will always be a new way to harvest your address and new ways to combat the junk.
    -Mark

  9. #8
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    I ain't Bruce, but.....

    AMEN, Brother! You go Guy!

  10. #9
    5 Star Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    That's a pretty good list of how they get addresses to begin with, but here's a couple of tricks that I've heard are now being used to confirm that they have managed to find a real, live address to continue to spam.
    <UL><LI>Return receipts - Spam sent out to request a return receipt from the recipient. The default setting for Outlook, I do believe, is to automatically handle such requests. This could easily reveal your real address to the spammer despite the spam having been sent to a 'dummy' address and then forwarded to your real address.
    <LI>Web beacons - Virtually invisible 1x1 pixel graphics downloaded when you open html email. While offensive, most just give away your ip address as the host computer sees where the beacon is being pulled to. The more insidious ones that spammers tend to use attach your emal address to the request, therefore they know exactly which messages to which email addresses are being viewed. Preview in Outlook and they've got you.[/list]

  11. #10
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Mark ~

    I agree that spam is a pain in the hinder for many people and I certainly don't like to see Farmsluts in my inbox every other day. My query wasn't critical or rhetorical, I was asking. I have had Mailwasher for awhile now but haven't installed it. I guess what I was trying to ask was considering I have little or no idea how this software works and the work required to set up and monitor yet another program taking up residence on the local, at what point is there a breakpoint or payoff or fair exchange or whatever where one determines it is worth it - 20 e-mails? 40? 90? 150? At this point it seems, for me - now - that it is easier to delete what I get. If I were to go to the extreme of performing a cost/benefit analysis figure, it might not seem justifiable in time, labor, and resources....but then I don't know what is required to handle that spam. I suppose I was looking to read rave reviews of simplicity, ease and worthiness as occurred w/ AVG. I guess didn't wanna be guinea pig this go around. <IMG SRC=http://www.krymow.com/images/pigbacon.gif>

  12. #11
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    That was a point that I had hoped to make - that there is no magic number of spam that makes a utility to fight it worthwhile, and that no one tool is 100%, nor will it ever be. If deletion works better for you - excellent! One less program sucking up resources. My solution for now is to use Sneakemail. I like this solution because I can instantly determine who sold me out if crap shows up in my inbox. Of course I calmly and politely tell them what I think after I discover this too. Really, I do. The real solution is to do what works for you as an individual.
    -Mark

  13. #12
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    I went to visit Sneakemail to check it out but found no mention of bouncing. Does it bounce? Or is 'damming' bouncing? Or just a hold until you decide what to do?

  14. #13
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    No, it doesn't bounce. The mail-dam is a holding area of sorts. It's more for disposable email addresses than anything else - it comes into your normal inbox, and you can see in the message header who it came from. You reply the same way, and remain anonymous.
    -Mark

  15. #14
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Hi Mark:
    Yes, it is. Thanks for this additional site for producing disposable addresses (& David, thank for one more site). I like to keep a list because you never know when one will go belly up or start charging (I can't figure out how they keep in business anyhow; there seems to be nothing to sell). I hope that websites don't start blacklisting email addresses from these sites. I do recall not being able to use a hotmail account for ordering once.

    Cheers,

  16. #15
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: SpamMotel - best solution yet

    Hi David:
    Do you know if it's possible to avoid the confirmation by the invisible 1x1 pixels. What I do is after my messages are downloaded from the server, I go offline to open up the suspicious ones, & then delete it before going back online. Do you know if that avoids the "confirmation"?

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