Category Archives: Spam

I’m always amazed at some of the completely inane spam that my filter catches. Since I’m sure you don’t have enough of your own, let me share it with you!

It’s indubitably a serendipity

This may be the most unintelligible comment spam ever…

Starting, they desideratum to be taught that filing lawsuits is not the course of sortie to accomplish to a deterrent piracy. Extent than, it’s to earn something mastery than piracy. Like calmness of use. It’s indubitably a serendipity easier to daunt one’s nose up at iTunes than to search the Internet with inadvertent of malware and then crappy the ruling classes, but if people are expected to redress end of hideaway from loads and convoy to against ages, it’s not give out to work. They but be subjected to a dull-witted on weigh in in the lead people beget software and Entanglement sites that amount to it ridiculously tranquilly to infringer, and up the quality. If that happens, then there compel be no stopping piracy. But they’re too reasonable and horrified of losing. Risks unthreatened to be delighted!

Spam for Clinton!

Before both the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary, I noticed a rise in a new type of spam – fake blogs causing Google alerts to send not-so-subliminal political messages:

Google Blogs Alert for: Buffalo Central Terminal

Bill Clinton Photo Gallery
By admin
They’re staying at (we’re not devising this up) Tiggywinkles Animal hillary clinton nude pics The Buffalo Central Terminal magnificent. anti-Clinton forces claiming that he was “framed” eeeeeevil Bill Clinton. …
Hillary Clinton Gallery – http://hillary-clinton-gallery.SuggestHillary.com

Interestingly enough, Clinton was the only person ever referenced in these spam messages. As if I didn’t already have enough reasons to dislike her. I certainly don’t need her name popping up in the middle of my Google alerts.

Spam Filtering

This week’s Spam article is on a more serious note. Having long been a subscriber of McAfee’s security products, including McAfee SpamKiller, I was very curious as to certain changes made in their recent update from version 7 to 8. In version 7, SpamKiller would download all your mail to a “holding area” passing through any non-spam to your email client. You could then open SpamKiller to look through the blocked messages, previewing any potentially mismarked spam in a safe preview environment where images wouldn’t load, and potentially harmful information wouldn’t be sent back to spammers.

Along comes version 8. McAfee removes the controlled environment completely, reducing the product to a glorified mail filtering rule. Anything it deems as spam gets moved to a SpamKiller folder and has [SPAM] prepended to the title. Whoop-de-frickin-doo! I thought the point of having an addon product was to actually protect me from the bad things spam could do, like validate that my email address is real when I open a spam so that I get ten times as much spam the next week. Not only that, but the spam filtering itself seemed to be far inferior to it’s predecessor.

When questioned about the changes on their support forum, I got the avoidance response. “MSK8 was completely re-architected for both performance and accuracy. We think you’ll find that it’s a dramatic improvement over MSK7 in both categories.” No, I don’t find it a dramatic improvement. I find it odd that a security company like McAfee would water down their product to the point where it introduces more vulnerabilities for the vast majority of users which we can assume are using Outlook Express as their mail client.

Based on other comments I read on their forum, I decided to give Mozilla Thunderbird a try. Boy was I impressed! Thunderbird actually makes up for the shortfalls introduced by the new version of SpamKiller. It will automatically block images in emails if the sender is not in your address book. It will “sanitize” HTML mail that is marked as Spam so you can safely view it within Thunderbird. It also includes it’s own adaptive Spam filtering, and a key mail rule missing from Outlook Express which allows you to send any email from a sender not in your address book right to the trash. This eliminates the need for SpamKiller altogether. Best of all, Thunderbird is free.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of users aren’t going to run out and switch to Thunderbird, so it’s unfortunate that McAfee has decided to go in the direction they have with MSK. It leaves current users of Outlook Express vulnerable to problems they didn’t have with MSK7. Then again, based on the responses I’ve seen by McAfee in their forum, it doesn’t appear they think their customers would care. Bad strategic decision when Microsoft themselves are planning on releasing functionality built into the next OS that essentially eliminates the need for the entire McAfee product line.

I’m trialing AVG Anti-Virus Free now, which I’ve also heard good things about, in hopes of being able to eliminate once and for all the pricy annual McAfee subscription. Conveniently, that subscription runs out this month. I’m very confident I’ll be pocketing that $50 a year.

Spam special 7/30

I love it when spammers are too stupid for their own good and screw up their garbage. Abel Vang wants us to know about “Brand Name Watches at Basement Prices” but only manages to get this out…

Lois
http://%OBSCURE
Abel Vang

Damn, Abel. I was so excited to FINALLY be able to find where those cheap name brand watches have been hiding, only to be thwarted by a technical glitch. Could you get back to me with a real link? I’d appreciate it. Thaaaaaanks!