Stopping Spam

Overview

This is a book about spam — unwanted email messages and inappropriate news articles — and what you can do to prevent it, stop it, and even outlaw it. It's a book for people who have seen their mailboxes fill up with useless messages and unsolicited advertisements, and who are tired of footing the bill for them in their Internet service charges. It's a book for people who are upset that they can't find the on-topic postings in their once-helpful newsgroups, and fear that the community of newsgroup readers will ...

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Overview

This is a book about spam — unwanted email messages and inappropriate news articles — and what you can do to prevent it, stop it, and even outlaw it. It's a book for people who have seen their mailboxes fill up with useless messages and unsolicited advertisements, and who are tired of footing the bill for them in their Internet service charges. It's a book for people who are upset that they can't find the on-topic postings in their once-helpful newsgroups, and fear that the community of newsgroup readers will dissolve in disgust.Stopping Spam looks at the problem of spam and explains ways you can eliminate unwanted messages and news postings. It provides information of use to individual users (who don't want to be bothered by spam) and to system administrators (also news administrators, mail administrators, and network administrators, who are responsible for minimizing spam problems within their organizations or service providers). It covers:

  • Introduction to spam: what is it, why is it a problem, who are the spammers and why do they do it, what are the types of spam (spam that sells things, spam that contains political messages, spam that hurts people's reputations), what is its history, what is its impact on the Internet now and in the future?
  • Internet messaging: a brief look at the technical underpinnings of Internet messaging to explain how email and spam work.
  • User's guides to email and news spam: how to protect your email address, filter email and news articles, and respond to spam.
  • Administrator's guide: how to trace spam, make policy choices for your site, block both incoming and outgoing spam, and select the right technical tools.
  • Community responses: how to join forces to defeat spam. There are many possible responses to spam: simply delete it, complain to spammers and/or their service providers, share information, trap spammers, litigate, campaign for legislative solutions, use the media.
  • Other resources: offline and online documents, tools, mailing lists, and more.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781565923881
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/8/1998
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 201
  • Product dimensions: 6.99 (w) x 9.12 (h) x 0.54 (d)

Meet the Author

Simson Garfinkel, CISSP, is a journalist, entrepreneur, and international authority on computer security. Garfinkel is chief technology officer at Sandstorm Enterprises, a Boston-based firm that develops state-of-the-art computer security tools. Garfinkel is also a columnist for Technology Review Magazine and has written for more than 50 publications, including Computerworld, Forbes, and The New York Times. He is also the author of Database Nation; Web Security, Privacy, and Commerce; PGP: Pretty Good Privacy; and seven other books. Garfinkel earned a master's degree in journalism at Columbia University in 1988 and holds three undergraduate degrees from MIT. He is currently working on his doctorate at MIT's Laboratory for Computer Science.

Alan Schwartz, Ph.D. is an assistant professor of clinical decision making in the Departments of Medical Education and Pediatrics at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is also the author of Managing Mailing Lists and the coauthor of Stopping Spam (both from O'Reilly). He serves as a consultant on Unix system administration for several ISPs. In his spare time, he develops and maintains the PennMUSH MUD server and brews beer and mead with his wife, with whom he also develops and maintains their son. Turn-ons for Alan include sailing, programming in Perl, playing duplicate bridge, and drinking Anchor Porter. Turn-offs include spam and watery American lagers.

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Table of Contents

Preface
1 What's Spam and What's the Problem? 1
2 The History of Spam 17
3 Spamming Today 36
4 Internet Basics 43
5 A User's Guide to Email Spam 66
6 A User's Guide to Usenet Spam 107
7 Spam Stopping for Administrators and ISPs 134
8 Community Action 153
A Tools and Information 169
B Cyber Promotions Timeline 177
Index 183
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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2002

    A good introduction to understanding the problem

    This is a decent introduction to the problems of spam and offers a few options to reduce the amount of spam received. My comments of the above two posts: 'This book seems more about justification of sophomoric revenge tactics than useful information on controlling spam.' It is a valid claim to some degree. However, there are ISPs that do little or nothing to stem the flow. In fact, you can report problems to their abuse addresses and never get a responce. Knocking down the networks seems to have 'motivated' a few to clean up their act. It is right? Of course not. But what do you do when you are getting spammed from their networks and their response is 'we don't care' As to the spamking if that is in fact him, It is the typical self justication that is always promoted. If it is a worthwhile business why is so much effort put into bypassing filters? If it is an 'honest' business then why is so much effort put into developing ways to use other peoples equipment and Internet connections to deliver spam? If it is an 'honest' business then why are remove requests almost guarnteed to get you more spam as it validates there is a person behind the email address. The Internet does not have the protections of snail mail and unfortuantly does not charge the spammers for mail deliveries so corruption and dishonesty will remain. It is a hard fight but you can stem the flow. This book will help you understand the areas more. However, it is not a solution since the spammers are spending a great deal of time and money to steal resources from companies that have poor security and thinking of ways to bypass your mail filters. The book is out of print, but I would get it if you can find it.

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