Software to Spam the Spammers
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SpamItBack is a software which you can download, and which claims to allow you to create a message which you’d like to get across to those who spam you, and to “target the spammers websites, online ordering forms, or any personal spam e-mail addresses that have been discovered, with your message, and makes sure it gets delivered.”

In otherwords, it allows you to spam back the spammers who spam you.


Well, at first blush what Aunty sees is wrong with this idea is that if you send a message back to a spammer, you have just confirmed the fact that a warm body reads the email at your email address.

But that isn’t likely to happen with SpamItBack.

Because, you see, SpamItBack actually encourages you to send many copies of that message, and to bigger and bigger and BIGGER that message (more apologies to Dr. Seuss), creating the functional equivalent of a DDOS against the spammer’s site..or their ISP…or..wherever you choose to send that message. Says the SpamItBack site: “You can deliver this message once, a thousand times, or as many times as you want. You can also make the message as large as you want, 1KB, 10KB, 100KB.”

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“Wait, Aunty!” you say, “It’s deja vu all over again! Didn’t you just tell us about another company inciting users to cause the functional equivalent of a DDOS against spammers’ sites? And wasn’t it an abyssmal failure, leading to industry derision for that company?”

Ah, you are very astute readers. Yes, Aunty reported in some detail about the Lycos “Make Love Not Spam” screensaver (wait..it’s a DDOSer..it’s a screensaver..it’s two..two..two programs in one!) here, here, and even here.

What makes SpamItBack different is a game-like aspect to the program. Users actually post their “high scores”, and can earn rank by attaining a certain score. There’s even a private area to which you can only gain access by scoring at a certain minimum level.

 

Interestingly, SpamItBack actually appeared before the ill-fated Lycos project. But it hasn’t garnered near the press which the latter received, even allegations that the Lycos project was one big PR stunt aside.

Indeed, a visit to the SpamItBack site reveals that the last update to their “list of off-line spammers” (those who were ostensibly knocked off line by the software) happened back in June. However recent activity in their forums suggests that at least some users are still going strong, and tracking their high scores.

If you are anything like Aunty, you find the idea of creating more Internet flotsam to clog up the pipes reprehensible. The old “two wrongs don’t make a right” thing.

SpamItBack’s answer to this is, interestingly, and from a press release on their website:

“When asked if SpamItBack is contributing to an increase the amount of Junk email cluttering the internet, James said, “we recognise that not everyone will agree with the methodology of what we are trying to achieve. It must however, be made very clear that the software is not sending out spam. “Spam”, as it is currently defined is a – ‘commercial solicitation’ with the spammer usually sending out thousands or millions of emails every day to individuals. Responding to a spammer, telling them not to spam you, is not. The software is only sending messages to a selected group of individuals and companies that are confirmed spammers asking that they stop spamming…”

Uh huh.

The release goes on: “In actual fact, by rendering major spammer domains ineffective we are reducing the quantity of junk email being sent each day.”

Aha! So they *admit* that they are DDOSing the sites. Tsk tsk. Naughty naughty.
And finally, “Obviously in the past, a lot of people told spammers not to spam them, hence the reason spammers now resort to subterfuge, not providing any means of contacting the spammer. This software allows the individual receiving spam to once again tell the spammer to stop spamming. The majority of negativity towards SpamItBack stems from a misunderstanding of what the software does and how it operates.”

Uh. No. The majority of negativity stems from your misunderstanding of acceptable Internet behaviour.

“Self-defense” is almost never a valid defense, even when someone is physically right in your face.

Shame on you, says Aunty.

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The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
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6 thoughts on “Software to Spam the Spammers
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  1. Hmmm spammee sucky dicky dicky long long…..

    As my good friend Ali G said when questioned about “What situations did violence ever solve?” He replied, “Violent ones”.

    “Spam me, I kick you in the gollies, as hard as I can, as often as I can, for as long as I can, till you get the hint, – to fuck off”.

    Simple.

  2. Be aware of ciphire mail as it secretly contains spector pro keylogger in the ciphire-mail.exe file and was picked up using spyware doctor. Who know what they use your personal information for logging every keystroke on your computer.

  3. Spamming the spammers is the ONLY way – it is the ISP’s who are allowing spammers online – there must be a disincentive to the ISP’s to provide them with accounts. The only way to “persuade” the ISP’s witbout legislation is to hurt their business by thrashing bandwith.

  4. Thank You Dave for telling it right!
    You stop being a victim when you start fighting back,
    and fighting back is the only thing that will stop the spammers.

    VICE

  5. Thank you Dave for telling it right!
    You stop being a victim when you start fighting back.
    And fighting back is the only thing that will stop the spammers.

    VICE

  6. Oh come on!

    ““Self-defenseâ€? is almost never a valid defense, even when someone is physically right in your face.” ?!?!

    To say that statement is FALSE ON IT’S FACE is belaboring the obvious. Self defense IS BY IT’S VERY DEFINITION a “valid defense”.

    The only time “self-defense” isn’t considered valid (from a legal point of view) is when it’s deemed “excessive”. Guess what: This rarely happens.

    If your argument is that this is “excessive force”, then it’s a poor one. I’ve had numerous email accounts overwhelmed by spam. Guess what?! That’s a DDOS! So it’s somehow wrong to defend yourself by DDOS them back?

    Last time I checked, if someone was punching you in the face, you were completely entitled to punch them back (and more) if your intent is to get them to stop; legally (and IMNSHOP morally).

    Some may argue that you shouldn’t hit back: That you should run away and then call law enforcement to prosecute them. If so – what do you do if you CAN’T run away, and/or law enforcement WON’T do anything?

    I feel sorry for you… You must have had a childhood scarred by hunger, as once the bullies realized you wouldn’t fight back you were easy pickin’s for stealing your lunch money!

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