One of my photos

Return To Sender

September 24th, 2008 · Posted by Skuds in Technology · No Comments · Technology

In the last couple of days I have noticed a new trend with the bits of spam e-mail that get past all the various anti-spam defences: read receipts.   As we know, some spam is sent out speculatively and indiscriminately to millions of e-mail addresses in the full expectation that many or most of them will either not be valid addresses or belong to long-dormant accounts. Accidentally let the receipt get sent and someone could know that your address is a live one, making it more valuable and leading to a lot more targeted spam.

It is possible to set your mail client to either never send a receipt or to ask you before sending one, but it is also possible to let it send these receipts automatically without letting you know.  How many people are sending confirmation that their mail account is current and active off to spammers?

Not sure how it all works though.  For it to be of any use to the spammers the return address for the receipt has to be a real e-mail address and most spam uses spoofed addresses doesn’t it?

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