Un-Due Process - Part 2

Written by Elena Fawkner


OK, now let's turn torepparttar real bad guy in all of this. The webhost who shuts down a website onrepparttar 132792 grounds of nothing more thanrepparttar 132793 say-so of an unverified spam complaint. In my case, it's DumbHost but I know there are many other webhosts and ISPs out there who are just as irresponsible.

Here'srepparttar 132794 email I received from DumbHost informing me my site had been shut down:

"To whom it may concern,

"We recieved [sic]repparttar 132795 following spam complaint regarding ahbbo.com. Your domain will be temporarily disabled for 3 days. You can have your domain re-enabled atrepparttar 132796 end of this 3 day period by requesting so at enable@unsupportteam.net. If we continue to recieve [sic] complaints, action may be taken to disable your domain.

"Regards, Abuse Response Team"


The email that followed wasrepparttar 132797 one from WeStopSpam.net.

Note that my site was shut down because "[w]e recieved [sic]repparttar 132798 following spam complaint regarding ahbbo.com". Not because I had SPAMMED, mind you, but because DumbHost had received a spam COMPLAINT. The notification that my site had been disabled wasrepparttar 132799 FIRST communication from DumbHost onrepparttar 132800 matter.

An appropriate response would have been: "We've received a complaint of spamming against you. We take all complaints of spamming very seriously. Please let us have your response to this complaint so we may take appropriate action". But I guess that would have been too much like due process for DumbHost to want to bother with.

Here's what followed:

From me to DumbHost:

"If you even bothered to readrepparttar 132801 "offending email" you will see that it came from so-and-so.com, NOT ahbbo.com. The publisher ofrepparttar 132802 email in question reprinted one of my articles in his newsletter. That article contained a resource box which contained a link to my domain.

"If my site is shut down for ANY length of time as a result of this complaint, expect a lawsuit without further notice."

Their reply (from "Level II Customer Care Representative" - ha!):

"Was this bulk mail authorized by you? This is considered an offense of our terms of service no matter where it originates as long asrepparttar 132803 email is sent or authorized by you. The email advertises your website, that is why your domain has been disabled for 3 days.

Regards, Abuse Response Team"

Me again:

"No! I've never heard of these people before. It is common practice for newsletter publishers to publish articles written by other people. The author's resource box is always included atrepparttar 132804 end ofrepparttar 132805 article. If this person's newsletter went to someone who wasn't subscribed, then it'srepparttar 132806 newsletter publisher who should be reported for spamming, notrepparttar 132807 innocent author who is unfortunate enough to have their work reprinted.

"Did anyone even readrepparttar 132808 email concerned before shutting my site down? It's obvious what happened. If my site is not reinstated today, I will be issuing legal proceedings tomorrow. "Byrepparttar 132809 way, don't you think your question should have been asked BEFORE shutting me down, not after?"

Them again:

"Okay, I was asked to take a look at your account, I will forward this information to abuse and they should get back to you shortly...

"Best regards,

Jordan M. Level II Customer Care"

(They apparently don't use full names at Level II Customer Care. Can't imagine why.)

Un-Due Process - Part 1

Written by Elena Fawkner

"Automatic complaints are sent when a filter whose action is set to Kill after complaining is triggered. For each filter, you can configure whorepparttar complaint should be sent to. ... The message body is also scanned for e-mail and website addresses. If any addresses are found, they're added torepparttar 132790 lists mentioned above." Source: http://www.spamkiller.com/Features.html

SpamKiller is spam filtering software. Its purpose is to scan incoming email for spam and take appropriate action in response to those messages that are identified as spam, such as automatic deletion. Another handy function is thatrepparttar 132791 software allowsrepparttar 132792 user to generate automatic and manual complaint emails whichrepparttar 132793 user then sends torepparttar 132794 webmaster ofrepparttar 132795 offending domain as well as any number of other recipients such as spam-reporting "authorities" andrepparttar 132796 webhost and/or ISP ofrepparttar 132797 person sendingrepparttar 132798 offending mail.

Good idea, you say? Fair enough, you say? Well ... maybe. Noterepparttar 132799 quote above: "... The message body is also scanned for e-mail and website addresses ... [and] added torepparttar 132800 lists mentioned above", i.e.repparttar 132801 list of recipients ofrepparttar 132802 complaint.

Now, imagine this. Let's say you're a paying advertiser in my ezine. Your ad contains your URL and email address. I spam mail my ezine or send it to someone who forgets they subscribed and they think it's spam.

Imagine further thatrepparttar 132803 recipient of my so-called spam uses SpamKiller software (or some similar program). The software scansrepparttar 132804 message header and extractsrepparttar 132805 relevant information aboutrepparttar 132806 person who sentrepparttar 132807 email (me). Fair enough. Assuming that it IS spam, of course.

Butrepparttar 132808 capability ofrepparttar 132809 software doesn't stop there. As mentioned inrepparttar 132810 above quote, it also scansrepparttar 132811 message BODY, which contains your ad, and adds your URL and email address torepparttar 132812 list of recipients ofrepparttar 132813 complaint. The ever-diligent big-spam-hunter also makes sure that one or more spam-reporting "authorities" is copied onrepparttar 132814 complaint.

WeStopSpam.net*, diligent, professional organization that it is, immediately and automatically forwardsrepparttar 132815 complaint to abuse@yourdomain.com and your webhost, an equally diligent, professional organization shuts your site down for three days for spamming.

You, of course, learn about all of this AFTERrepparttar 132816 event.

Think it can't happen to you? Think again. It happened to me. This week. Except I wasn't a paying advertiser inrepparttar 132817 offending ezine. The publisher ofrepparttar 132818 ezine reprinted one of my articles. The article contained my resource box. The resource box contained my website URL. SpamKiller added my URL torepparttar 132819 list of recipients ofrepparttar 132820 email complaining ofrepparttar 132821 "spam", copied WeStopSpam.net and WeStopSpam.net forwardedrepparttar 132822 email to abuse@ahbbo.com withrepparttar 132823 result that my webhost, DumbHost*, shut down my site for what was to be three days.

The actual downtime was two hours. By that time I had threatened to sue and they finally got around to actually READINGrepparttar 132824 offending email and realizing that I, in fact, was just an innocent bystander.

There is so much that is wrong in this whole scenario that it's hard to know where to begin.


Let's start withrepparttar 132825 individual who generatedrepparttar 132826 complaint inrepparttar 132827 first place. This isrepparttar 132828 person usingrepparttar 132829 SpamKiller software. His email to me (which was auto-generated by SpamKiller) containedrepparttar 132830 following subject line:

"UCE Complaint (So-and-So Newsletter*)"

The body started out:

"I have receivedrepparttar 132831 attached unsolicited e-mail from someone at your domain. [He had not.]

"I do not wish to receive such messages inrepparttar 132832 future, so please takerepparttar 132833 appropriate measures to ensure that this unsolicited e-mail is not repeated.

"--- This message was intercepted by SpamKiller (www.spamkiller.com) ---"

The full text ofrepparttar 132834 intercepted message followed.

The header ofrepparttar 132835 offending email clearly showed thatrepparttar 132836 sender ofrepparttar 132837 email was someone from so-and-so.com*. Unfortunately,repparttar 132838 newsletter concerned contained virtually nothing but my article interrupted by what I assume were paid ads.

I'm sure thatrepparttar 132839 paid advertisers in this particular ezine also received a complaint and that WeStopSpam.net received a copy and automatically forwarded it torepparttar 132840 advertiser's ISP and/or webhost who may or may not have shut them down, at least temporarily. (Hopefully not all webhosts are ofrepparttar 132841 calibre of DumbHost when it comes to this sort of thing.)

So, this individual, in his zealousness to ridrepparttar 132842 Internet of spam, blithely draggedrepparttar 132843 names and reputations of at least half a dozen perfectly innocent bystanders throughrepparttar 132844 mud.

Cont'd on page 2 ==>
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