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Re: Spamming the World through Open Debian Mailinglists (Re: lists.debian.org has received bounces from you)

Ben Pfaff <blp@cs.stanford.edu> writes:
> Don Armstrong <don@debian.org> writes:

>> If you sign up for mail from mailing lists, just discard mail that you
>> don't want to read that comes in from us with Priority: bulk or List-*
>> headers instead of bouncing it. A mailing list is little more than a
>> glorified mail forwarder: bouncing forwarded mail is wrong.

> I don't control my mail server, so I can't make it do that.

For whatever it's worth, Stanford's main campus servers never bounce spam
for basically this reason.  We either silently discard it if it's
extremely high-probability spam or we deliver it tagged and let the
recipient filter it or not as they choose.

Bouncing spam is a reliable way to mailbomb some innocent person, and as
someone who's been mailbombed by such things repeatedly, I don't like the
experience.  This is true even when you do it properly at the SMTP level,
since there are numerous ways in which spam gets forwarded, particularly
in a university context where there are a lot of departmental mail servers
and a lot of forwarding back and forth to one's server of choice.  None of
the attempted reworks of the SMTP protocol to address this have really
caught on.

I can't speak for CS, however; I'm not sure what they do.

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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