02 February, 2007

Fighting spam with spam

It is no secret why junk email is so successful: it costs practically nothing to send a message to a million of addresses. Those addresses are gathered in a variety of ways, one of them is harvesting them off websites, so these days practically nobody has an actual email address that you can click on and send a message to. No, they are either images, so you have to type the address yourself, or contain some bot-tricking "removespam" characters, or altogether hidden behind a web form.

Well, I think we (the good spam-hating people) should start putting email links back on our pages, and as many as possible. Of course, they have to be fake addresses.

It takes me, let's see...

johnjackbob@fsdfgfdgdsd.com
maryannb@fssdff3gdsd.com
son.of.tree@fs2d3dfgsdd.com
nilesfkenn@fsd5566dsd.com
ipkind@f33sdd33dsd.com

...about 50 seconds to come up with the addresses above. Now, when the spam-bots will do their harvesting, they'll pick those up and 5 solid financial offers won't rich a recipient. This won't make any difference, of course, if there are just 5 addresses, but if a million people will come up with 5-10 fake addresses each, that'll be much more of a burden to spammers. The ultimate goal is to dilute real addresses with lots of fake ones, which is cheap, easy and effective. To put it in other way, it's spamming the spammers!

P.S. And we should also keep a few fake records in our email application's address book, so if -- God forbid -- a worm infects us, it take some poison back to its lair!

2 comments:

Nico! said...

What might even be more effective is something the sort of a google bomb. Have hundreds of thosands of fake email addresses on a number of website documents, that way when the bot finds it the bot will be more than full of addresses making the probability of getting spammed from that particular bot a lot less. Even better would be to fight fire with fire, and collect spammers addresses and then when they spam the other spam bots, those bots will spam back (since they are typically programmed to spam more to people who reply) and it will end up just backfiring.

My Left Nut said...

I love both ideas. This could truly solve all of the problems with spam. Feel free to e-mail me at:

boscobob@bob.com
boscobob@bosco.com
farfignewton@volkswagen.com
fairfignewton@cookie.com
finefignewton@cookies.net