What's The Deal With The Classic Lit Spam?

from the two-roads-diverged-in-a-wood-and-i-took-the-one-with-v1*gr* dept

It's hard to tell sometimes what's really going on with spam. Filters and other mechanisms are improving to some extent, creating the appearance that the problem is lessening, but it's doubtful that the overall volume of spam being sent is decreasing. But one type of spam seems to be on the rise: bizarre messages with nothing but short quotes from literary classics. Nobody really seems to know quite what the point of these messages is, but one email company says they make up 4% of all spam, peaking as high as 40% in June. The most common theory about these messages is that they're part of a slightly long-term attempt to confuse spam filters, in the hopes that users will label them as spam and throw off the filters so later spam that actually includes some sort of commercial message, gets through. Others say it looks like it's just the result of some sort of communications failure between a spammer and the zombie PCs they're trying to use. It's unclear exactly what's going on, and nobody seems to be able to track a spammer down to ask them. Perhaps they're all originating from somebody looking to rekindle people's interest in classic literature, rather then just trying to get them to look at some more porn.


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  1.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 9:09am

    That sounds interesting

    But i haven't gotten any... Where can I sign up?

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 9:20am

    Here, you can read mine

    Got this the other day.

    ---
    I know what youre going to say, dear, every word; and most of itstrue. But it might be nice to have a nice cottage in the country. He marched out tothe porch, down to the drift of pine needles, in his nightshirt andbare feet. Fred was excited, and she was afraid ofspontaneous combustion. And Annabel is awfully worried about you two getting rheumatismhere. A week after their return to Sachem, Fred applied for theirpassports. Please stop trying to be cute, Fred, and tell me what youre upto. Lets go up to the Kings Arms and have a cocktail. And Annabel is awfully worried about you two getting rheumatismhere.
    Have I complained properly about the vulgarity? He exploded up from his chair, but he managed tobe fairly calm as he croaked:Me?
    But it might be nice to have a nice cottage in the country. What a little wizard he was, Fred exulted.
    Say, uh, Hazel, dont you think we better start thinking aboutwhat were going to do for vacation?
    Honestly, Ihate to say it, but dont you think it was a little thoughtless ofyou?
    All the interesting things in life are sovulgar, Father Cornplow: birth and death and battles. Every couple weeks or so, I could go back toSachem for maybe one day.
    He had one side ripped off a Duplex, so that itshidden domesticities were revealed.
    Insisting that Im such a foolas to like that little rat, Silga. Ill meet you in the old place in Albany,bout eight to-night. Everybody took advantageof it and tried to borrow money
    ---

     

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  3.  
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    Ajax 4Hire, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 9:22am

    Hide website click-thru in the quotes

    Hide website click-thru in the quotes, duh.

    Splash the quote in a gif/jpg/bmp with a link to your favorite latest infection web-site to exploit the last Microsoft vulnerability in IExplorer, duh.

    Next it will be bible verse, then quotes from the famous and infamous. Anything to get the click "yes to infect" link.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 9:42am

    come on guys, not all hackers are punk kids, they are humans to, who can enjoy some Shakespeare

     

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  5.  
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    Whatever he said, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:26am

    C'mon now, nobody really enjoys Shakespeare. Spam me with some Plato or Tolstoy, now that's juicy!

     

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  6.  
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    Lay Person, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:32am

    I agree with #3

    Yup, there is a click-thru embeded somewhere...guaranteed.

    Nothing unique and magical about it. Just the same old shit with a new twist.

    Don't get too wrapped up about it.

     

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  7.  
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    Gary Wallin, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:34am

    Literary Spam?

    Maybe they're coded messages? Has Homeland Security, the CIA, and NSA looked into this?

     

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  8.  
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    Brian, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:46am

    Lirerary Spam

    They probably have an embedded image when downloaded lets them know you have an active email address. If the spammers can prove that the address is active they can get better money for their lists because people are checking the email. A lot of problems spammers have is that the email addresses they get are invalid/inactive accounts. They send the literature to bypass the spam filter and move into your in box hoping you'll select the "Download Images" button. Most people will respond well to their favorite book.

     

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  9.  
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    Spamlet, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:47am

    Brute force mail list-cleansing / address harvesting (unreturned message = valid address) ???

    ... or just activation codes for brainwashed sleeper agents who will perform the plays of Shakespeare in contemporary garb to be "edgy" ...

    You decide.

     

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  10.  
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    Carlo, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:47am

    Yup, there is a click-thru embeded somewhere...guaranteed.

    Nothing unique and magical about it. Just the same old shit with a new twist.

    Don't get too wrapped up about it.


    Actually, as the story indicates, there's nothing in these messages but the text, despite your guarantee.

     

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  11.  
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    ehrichweiss, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:49am

    had some suspicions on this..

    I don't know if anyone noticed but a couple weeks before the WTC disaster there started to be a ton of messages posted to USENet that were reportedly created by a bot that was created by some students researching linguistics. They were completely nonsensical messages BUT they always had one thing in common..the beginning of the subject line. I theorized, a couple weeks after the WTC dealie, to an FBI agent that the END of the subject line was always a different combination of letters because it might be an encrypted way of saying "part 15 of 99" and that if they were using steganography, no one would notice that the words used were instead used to create a message to, say, terrorists. I don't know what the FBI did with that knowledge but less than 2 days later those messages completely stopped.

     

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  12.  
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    Nathan, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:55am

    I've gotten them

    And no, there is no click through. I've snooped around a bit to find where/why they come through too. I'm just as puzzled. Although, the week I was getting the Wizard of Oz broken up into 2/3 paragraph at a time was interesting.

     

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  13.  
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    redhammy, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 10:55am

    academic project?

    Maybe its the result of 1000 monkeys sitting in a laboratory somewhere banging on 1000 keyboards for 1000 years.

     

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  14.  
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    Robert Paulsen, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:05am

    hmmm

    Better question is: how many monkies could dance on the head of a pin...

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:10am

    What's a monkie?

     

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  16.  
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    rijit (profile), Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:12am

    Geah, Techdirt is slipping. With all the news online this is what we get? Blah yet again.

     

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  17.  
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    Greg, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:14am

    They all contain an image

    Basically - all these messages contain a single, embedded image which will be displayed to users with appropriate settings.

    Some of you don't see these because your ISP or email provider or corporate network or email application blocks / strips the embedded image.

    The reason for the text is to make them not look like spam to spam filters (ie. a spam filter would be rather suspicious of an email which was solely an embedded image. The text is often fro,m a classic novel because classics provide a large repository of free random text whcih can be varied in each mail. This prevents spam filters identifying particular strings or characteristics and blocking them.

    Those users whose system strips out the image at some stage simply see the text and wonder what's happening.

     

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  18.  
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    JaneWithersteen, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:22am

    Yes! to Academic Project

    From:(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infinite_monkey_theorem)

    "The Colbert Report provided an analysis of how many monkeys it would take for various works. This was in response to comments made in the news on monkeys typing out the Bible or the Koran. According to Colbert, one million monkeys typing for eternity would produce Shakespere, ten thousand (drinking) monkeys typing for ten thousand years would produce Hemingway, and ten monkeys typing for three days would produce Dan Brown.

    In 2000, the IETF Internet standards committee's April 1st RFC proposed an "Infinite Monkey Protocol Suite (IMPS)", a method of directing a farm of infinitely many monkeys over the Internet."

    Sometimes it's hard to tell the monkeys from the lawyers:

    From:© Greenberg & Lieberman TM, An Intellectual Property Law Firm
    "Theoretically, you own a copyright to something as soon as you produce it...Consider this scenario: Imagine a room with a hundred monkeys. Each monkey is pounding on a typewriter. One of these monkey's (we'll call him monkey A), through this random act of pounding, writes the...

    Let Greenberg & Lieberman record your copyright so you can enforce it.

    According to the copyright laws of the United States of America, you own the copyright in an idea once you have expressed it in some way."

     

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  19.  
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    Ron (profile), Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:27am

    Literature

    These things have been puzzling me for almost a year. I have noticed though that when I forward them back to my IPS as spam, I have sometimes highlighted the text and found white on white characters embedded in or around the quotes. Maybe some sort of key for the spammer? I've also not been as lucky as some of the rest of you in that a number of the ones I've received have not been literature, but rather have been short, seemingly unrelated phrases strung together. Considering the number of these strange messages, if this is a prelude to an attack, the attack will be a doozie.

     

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  20.  
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    Roy, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:27am

    Speaking of live addresses

    I have a largely unused domain that I still keep a catchall box on. It regularly gets spams (real spams, not literature) to a bunch of RFC2142-required system addresses. One would think spammers would be too smart to send pharma scams to root, admin, webmaster and uucp (among others), but they sure do.

     

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  21.  
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    JaneWithersteen, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:36am

    Spammers are terrorists!

    Why a terrorist would want to spam me with advance notice of their attacks is beyond me. According to 90% of my (spam) email I am lonely, bankrupt, impotent and basically just a general-all-around-loser... Is this the best way to destroy America?

     

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  22.  
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    Darren, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:46am

    Re: Spammers are terrorists!

    They do this to "untrain" Baynesian filters. It's a spam filtering technique. If you train your Baynesian filters with these "literary" emails it makes your filter more likely to block real emails. The literary quotes also make the spam appear more like a normal email. That's why the text is sometimes white. (invisible to you) but not invisible to the filter.

     

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  23.  
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    Sanguine Dream, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:49am

    Re:

    Does that mean I can sue for false advertisment since there are no click thrus?

     

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  24.  
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    Lay Person, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:54am

    Re:

    Sorry Carlo,

    I know you want to have the facts straight. Please read #17 because I would hate to have to repeat myself or add more to this than is necessary.

    Regardless of what your sources state. This is spam in the truest sense of the word. Just because you cannot see it does not mean that it's not there or that it wasn't intended to be there. Technology is such, now, that the intended content by the sender isn't always what the receiver sees. There are agents that strip content due to security settings.

     

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  25.  
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    cheryl, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 11:55am

    Text Only, Sometimes Images

    I'm getting a lot of these gibberish messages and I have been for months.

    Many of them contain attachments (NO TROJANS, NO VIRUSES) with Gifs with more of the gibberish.

    They seem to confound Gmail and my isp - but they don't have any imbedded links, any evil code - nothing. I've viewed source and looked line by line. It's just plain text!

    I'm thinking aliens. Or those people who run the numbers radio stations.

     

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  26.  
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    Nathan Kully, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:00pm

    Are poems next?

    It's a shame we havent been able to track down a spammer to interview him/her yet...i'm really interested if they are going to start sending spam messages in poetic forms. Once they've switched to classic lit it seems like the only next topic for them to avoid spam filters with is potentially poetic devices that avoid our filters

     

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  27.  
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    David, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:04pm

    Bayes, et al

    Ditto on the Bayesian confounding. I'd bet dollars to donuts that they're just inserting blocks of text from the Gutenberg Projects because that's a large source of good, clean textual data that's actual writing, so therefore hard to filter against. They put their spam stuff at the top (or not at all) and leave the rest to confuse the filter. That way people either turn their spam filtering off because of too many false positives, or just won't filter out those kinds of email as spam, which gives them an 'in'.

     

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  28.  
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    Lay Person, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:07pm

    Re: Re: Spammers are terrorists!

    Do you mean Bayesian filters?

    If so, how exactly does one untrain this sort of algorithm?

    In addition, why exactly is the text white? Are you suggesting that it not be seen? If so, why? the ascii is still there. Whether the intended recipient sees it or not is irrelevent because clearly people can see it or at least a part of it.

    The only way to trick the filter is to change over time. Emails such as these are sent sraight to the poop-shute. If not now, it will get there over time. The only reason some people get them numerous times is because there is an email admin asleep on their job.

     

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  29.  
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    Monk Groupie Club President, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:10pm

    Re:

    Monkies are Groupies for Monks - duh!

     

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  30.  
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    mononoke, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:18pm

    "Basically - all these messages contain a single, embedded image which will be displayed to users with appropriate settings.

    Some of you don't see these because your ISP or email provider or corporate network or email application blocks / strips the embedded image. "

    So my ISP/email provider is only stripping these out of the Spam with classical quotes? Because its leaving them in with the other Spam I get.

     

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  31.  
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    rrue, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:18pm

    I've been collecting and compiling the snippets into a random stream of consciousness mess that sometimes reads like high art. I'm tempted to take a page or two to a poetry slam and read it out loud.

     

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  32.  
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    Alan, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:18pm

    Re: Are poems next?

    Roses are red
    Violets are blue
    Here is some Spam
    I made it just for you!

     

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  33.  
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    Darren, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:20pm

    Re: Re: Re: Spammers are terrorists!

    Yes. I meant Bayesian filters - The text is white because there is no need for the recipient to see it. It's there to increase the likeliness of it getting in and to untrain the filter if the email admin should train the filter with it - it some cases they do it automatically - this will ruin the weighing system the bayesian filter uses making it more likely to block real emails.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:33pm

    I dont know what it is- I get fun names sending me things too, like Electricity P. Quagmire.

    Personally, I feel maybe I shouldn't try to buy prescription drugs from a company that can't spell the name of the drug, or Phahrhmaccci

     

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  35.  
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    Joe T, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:35pm

    I run my own mail server and have examined these email exactly as received. There are no embedded graphics, hyperlinks, or anything else other than the text.

    My theory is that they are checking for legit accounts.

     

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  36.  
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    Darren, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:42pm

    Re:

    That is another purpose. Directory harvesting. Realize that they are trying different techniques all the time.

     

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  37.  
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    Thomas, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 12:46pm

    These are really annoying!

    I HATE these spam messages. I get them on my e-mail addy at work, several per day. I've never given this addy out for anything and never got spam until this pile started showing up. All the gif images appear to be set up as some sort of broadcast stock buy advisory for lame penny stocks. The text is the same as shown above. These things are terrible! I can't filter them out! What I want is some sort of user-definable filter that says "If incoming message has greater than 2 .gif attachments, shitcan it!". I really wish there was a way to tell these jokers to knock off the bull. One or two of these isn't a big bother, but they just don't stop. It's frustrating! People that send out e-mail like this should be publicly lynched when caught!

     

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  38.  
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    Lay Person, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 1:11pm

    Re: Re:

    Yeah, but they can harvest without any content.

     

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  39.  
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    Whatever he said, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 1:14pm

    terrorism?

    It amazes me that spam works at all, the only people who like it are the ones who send it, who always say something like "the public wants it."

    So one has to wonder on the bigger "why" of it all. But then I know a dude who buys prescription drugs from one of them, and it takes a real idiot to pay $5 a pill for vicadin.

    That's it, as long as we have idots, we will have spam.

     

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  40.  
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    George Glass, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 1:34pm

    Harvesting or Filter-Breaker

    I have received these occasionally and have thought about it quite a bit. It could be harvesting addresses - saving the addy's that aren't returned, but I think it is to get people to classify it as spam - then when this causes them to lose legit mail, they turn their filters off completely! When the real spam comes in - it won't be filtered. Spammers are always a step ahead. Unfortunately.

     

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  41.  
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    John Bushman, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 1:45pm

    Baysian Filter

    The reason - in my opinion - that you see quotes and garbled text at the bottom of the spam email is an attempt to confuse the baysian filter. Most hosting companies use Spam Assassin as the backbone of the anti-spam efforts. Spam Assassin uses a baysian (statistical) filter to rate and rank keywords in messages. By sending enough spam mail with literary quotes and garbled text perhaps eventually the rating and ranking will become so out-of-whack that you will get false-positives, etc basically making your Spam Assassin useless...

    Or maybe they are literary students from other countrys with a flair for the dramatic?

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 2:21pm

    Yeah but shakespere? How does that mimic real e-mail when it's very unlike human speech?!

    Doth thou think it wilst rain on the company outing next fortnight?

     

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  43.  
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    googly_eyes, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 3:21pm

    It's for the filters

    I unfortunately added a couple of these to our corporate spam filter, hey I was in a hurry and had 10,000 other things to do - famous last words.

    After that, a ton more messages started slipping through the filter.

    The only cure was to reset the bayesian database and start over. Fortunately our filter relys on several layers of protection, and not just the bayes database.

    Moral of the story is that now I have to check every message that I add to make sure it isn't full of random crap.

     

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  44.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 3:33pm

    Perhaps the purpose of the e-mails is to validate addresses for spammers. They could countain a "tracer" 1 pixed gif or jpeg.

     

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  45.  
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    Arochone, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 3:50pm

    Never seen one...

    I gotta say, I have a gmail account, posted it all over the place, and I've never gotten one of these.
    Hell, last time any spam got through the filter was....month ago maybe?
    Last time I had a false-positive....never have.

    Here's my thoughts though. If they're using classic literature, as number #43 kinda hinted at, set it to filter messages with the crap that's not in our language anymore!
    Tell it to mark as spam any messages containing 'thee' 'thou' 'wilst' 'fortnight' and other crap like that.
    Of course, then they'll just start randomly sampling text from random websites......

     

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  46.  
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    alternatives, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 4:04pm

    Greg's got it right

    The text parts have 1 17K GIF attached. The one's that I've bothered to open up and view were stock buying spam.



    Here's an example


    Hunter Holly Birth Fire Jerry

    Past Entries Archives User Login Register BlogRoll: Some maybe NSFW. Info.
    Enter Soft: DeskTop

    And this one had 7 images:

    She rose andwent heavily out on her felt soles. But nobody wontever be the
    worse for it: Mr.
    Their motherstudied their mournful faces, and her overbearing
    expressionsoftened.
    Oh, very well, said Vickie bitterly, and she went upstairs. Rosen was
    stilltalking to Grandmother about Vickies studying.
    Listen: a great man once said: Le butnest rien; le chemin, cest tout. These
    youngpeople are full of their own affairs, you know. But I thought if there
    was any left you could get at, wecould let Vickie have it. The twins had not
    seen much suffering;Grandmother had seen a great deal. She had seen somuch
    misery that she wondered herself why it hurt so to see hertom-cat die.
    She had seen somuch misery that she wondered herself why it hurt so to see
    hertom-cat die.
    (and it goes on and on)

     

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  47.  
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    alternatives, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 4:05pm

    Greg's got it right

    The text parts have 1 17K GIF attached. The one's that I've bothered to open up and view were stock buying spam.



    Here's an example


    Hunter Holly Birth Fire Jerry

    Past Entries Archives User Login Register BlogRoll: Some maybe NSFW. Info.
    Enter Soft: DeskTop

    And this one had 7 images:

    She rose andwent heavily out on her felt soles. But nobody wontever be the
    worse for it: Mr.
    Their motherstudied their mournful faces, and her overbearing
    expressionsoftened.
    Oh, very well, said Vickie bitterly, and she went upstairs. Rosen was
    stilltalking to Grandmother about Vickies studying.
    Listen: a great man once said: Le butnest rien; le chemin, cest tout. These
    youngpeople are full of their own affairs, you know. But I thought if there
    was any left you could get at, wecould let Vickie have it. The twins had not
    seen much suffering;Grandmother had seen a great deal. She had seen somuch
    misery that she wondered herself why it hurt so to see hertom-cat die.
    She had seen somuch misery that she wondered herself why it hurt so to see
    hertom-cat die.
    (and it goes on and on)

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 4:09pm

    not necessarily classics...

    I got one with text from "Firewall" (recent movie starring Harrison Ford). I wish I saved it so I could post. I recognized the scene because I had just seen the movie the day before. Maybe we could nail them with copyright infringement. (if we knew who "them" were).

    Can't find a spammer? Surely they read techdirt. Calling on all anonymous cowards to fill us in...

     

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  49.  
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    Massive Spam Target, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 4:11pm

    Stock Sales

    Yup, I'm getting them too and they are all pitching stocks. The most recent was pitching EGLY.OB (http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=EGLY.OB). I use different email accounts for different arrangements and this is pretty targeted spam. The company that sold my email address does apparel tradeshows, and EGLY is an apparel sales company. I think EGLY should be held accountable for this collosal waste of bandwidth.

     

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  50.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 5:52pm

    Re: It's for the filters

     

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  51.  
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    Lay Person, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 5:58pm

    Re: It's for the filters

    Wow #44!

    Cool...so that explaines the whooooooolle story.

    Ladies and Gentlemen of this infernal planet, I understand.

    It truly is for the filters. It targets the bada but it also seems to have to be initiated by the admin to some degree. Hence the varying experiences with said mail.

     

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  52.  
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    Crimsondestroyer, Aug 2nd, 2006 @ 6:00pm

    Check them out in Outlook Express

    I use Outlook Express to check my mail (not verry smart of me I know), and I'll find tons of these messages with a twist.

    The interesting thing is that I'll only see the snipits if I actually view the source. Otherwise it's just an image or some HTML. The reason why is pretty obvious if you look.

    Heres an example (Warning it's pretty long)

    X-Message-Status: n:0
    X-SID-PRA: HotStock Tip
    X-SID-Result: TempError
    X-Message-Info: LsUYwwHHNt0LzzpNj8H6zKyLUqQ9Z7PLlqJYXsDJoV0=
    Received: from .info ([69.139.40.79]) by bay0-mc7-f1.bay0.hotmail.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.2444);
    Tue, 1 Aug 2006 16:20:50 -0700
    Received: by o4I089P0YhH.info id 6rWOOG860v857 for ; Tue, 01 Aug 2006 18:20:50 -0600 (envelope-from )
    Received: by spamchecked46.o4I089P0YhH.info id 2c220rw40jf85; Tue, 01 Aug 2006 18:20:50 -0600 (envelope-from vcbdedokiy@o4I089P0YhH.info)
    From: "HotStock Tip"
    To:
    Subject: Hot-Stock This Will MoveFast
    Date: Tue, 01 Aug 2006 18:20:50 -0600
    Mime-Version: 1.0
    Content-Type: text/html;
    Thread-Index: qVz6ZOE8en9uFIml0bqplrkPMbaipTI7NkXVCg56jkXQ3
    X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.00.2900.2180
    Message-Id:
    Return-Path: vcbdedokiy@o4I089P0YhH.info
    X-OriginalArrivalTime: 01 Aug 2006 23:20:50.0414 (UTC) FILETIME=[206FA0E0:01C6B5C1]






    Loading















    Like I said befoe you can only see the HTML

    (Note this isn't my E-mail address I have no Idea why I even recieved it.)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  53.  
    identicon
    roger, Aug 3rd, 2006 @ 7:54am

    Re: Yes! to Academic Project

    ...and ONE monkey has already produced several Ann Coulter books, right?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  54.  
    identicon
    da9ve, Aug 3rd, 2006 @ 7:54am

    Re: had some suspicions on this..

    That was my first thought, too. Dunno if that means I should be wearing a tinfoil hat, but, ya know,...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  55.  
    identicon
    Bobloblaw, Aug 3rd, 2006 @ 6:28pm

    I got one today

    This one had an image of text announcing some penny stock trade, and below it was several paragraphs of actual text from some book. It's pretty obvious that the lit is there because spam filters will easily block messages containing only a single embedded image with no text, but seemingly non-spam text accompanied by an image passes pretty easily. It passed through my spam filter into my inbox, and I'm running Symantec Brightmail, a very good spam filter.

    If you get the text with no image then it was probably converted from HTML into text somewhere along the way or the image was wiped out by some processing along the way.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  56.  
    identicon
    BlueEyedPeas, Aug 29th, 2006 @ 5:17am

    Mac

    I have a Mac and these are the only SPAM I have ever gotten on it. They come thru with the image (always stock trades) and the text which is sometimes literature and sometimes just random word salads. They always come from a different source. I bounce them and have blocked the domains on a couple of them but they still keep coming thru. Does anyone know how to stop them?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  57.  
    identicon
    Mike, Aug 31st, 2006 @ 1:32pm

    anything else you need

    Just thought you might want to know about this agenda, here at

    http://www.rdnd.seeoursmiley.org/zm/

    Nick narrated to me that you likely picked up about the news on losing those extra pds, Oh forgot, there also great at consulting me on getting fit.

    on, I came to the southern end of coke a line of cliffs cereal loftier the larger pieces sick of broken or return beast ever approached the pool while

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  58.  
    identicon
    KillSpammer, Sep 13th, 2006 @ 9:13am

    This is one of the motherfuckers doing the spamming. Got this through ARIN WHO IS. Name: Kemmerer, David
    Handle: DKE32-ARIN
    Company: PINE TREE CABLEVISION ACC BUSIN
    Address: 4934 D Highway 321
    City: Gaston
    StateProv: SC
    PostalCode: 29053
    Country: US
    Comment:
    RegDate: 2004-03-07
    Updated: 2004-03-07
    Phone: +1-803-939-1184 (Office)
    Email: dave@ptc-me.net

    # ARIN WHOIS database, last updated 2006-09-12 19:10
    # Enter ? for additional hints on searching ARIN's WHOIS database.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  59.  
    identicon
    Clint Mahoney, Nov 7th, 2006 @ 12:28pm

    Re: Lirerary Spam

    I always assumed that there's an embedded image that's an ad - I always have automatic opening of images and attachments turned off in my email.

    I dont' think spammers really try to get people to click on links to validate email but to make a purchase or steal a password. The way they validate email is that it doesn't bounce back when they send messages.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  60.  
    identicon
    nathan, Nov 13th, 2006 @ 8:30pm

    just plain random spam

    I started getting this kind of spam in late August. Every single sender has a random name like "Ben Guthrie" or "Dickon Dickerson" or "Lazuruth Little" accompanied by an equally random subject title like "cadaver pop" or (my favorite) "so-and-so lotion". Read the text from the latest!:

    Picketlines in Auckland are holding day and night with solidarity being shown from the community. Ook kan deze nieuwe versie beter overweg met webcams. Opmerkelijk is de functie die controleert of een webpagina sinds het vorige bezoek is aangepast. Dit pakket muziekbewerkingssoftware bestaat uit een mixer, een multi-track recorder en een audio sequencer. Workers are calling on the community to join picket lines and donate to the strike fund as the dispute drags on, clearing supermarket shelves.

    I've got to say, each email is very entertaining along with the stock quotes embedded in images..maybe I should listen to them one day? However the messages ruined my spam-free gmail account! :( whatever.

    Along with this spam I've been slowly but surely getting "real spam" with the viagra and whatnot...that spam sucks.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  61.  
    identicon
    Terry Reid, Nov 16th, 2006 @ 11:15pm

    Spam is a conspiracy

    so you classify it as span, it screws with your spam blocker. You don't, you just delete it and you just keep getting more and more of said crap/ non-crap classic lit [sometimes interesting to read, stream of consciousness good for found text poetry if you have all day to sift thru said waste of time]. So you get it, your addy is good and there's no bounce back. Now they got a good addy to sell, but your deal is you never read the stuff cuz you automically delete what looks suspiciously spamish especially since the big malicious attacks that caused you countless headaches and claimed many a hardrive and why would you even open a message from some ridiculous name that's not even someone you met at a rave, plus you still get those aweful phishing scams from some barrister in Bowanda or Nigeria telling you that you have inherited a fortune...but now and then the name does look familar or the subject is so tantalizing you just can't help but open it and have a laugh but at who's expense...what a ridiculously huge waste of time and energy, are they pinging my pc when they send it, are they conducting text/data mining tests? is it a conspiracy by the terrorists to confuse? It may be that one out of a hundred goes to the real key player and 99 are really just crap/spam to throw off the fence raising alarmists who are peering over our shoulders to see what connections ordinary people have with terrorists--if there's only six degrees of separation between you and Bush, the same goes for Osama. During WWII, the Japanese were confused by everything Navajo codetalkers transmitted by radio-it all sounded like gibberish, but it was also omnious because they knew it must be code. In the end all spam is is code whether underhanded, embedded with gif or trying to sell penny stock. It is annoying as hell. The aliens better stop cuz one day we will figure it out and decode their game plan and ambush them in the gulch.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  62.  
    identicon
    Krista, Nov 21st, 2006 @ 11:35am

    Re: Literary Spam?

    I was thinking the same thing, but it seems highly unlikely.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63.  
    identicon
    GJFGFJ, Dec 5th, 2006 @ 8:37am

    some of you are really retarded, or just kids who never grow up.


    There are no aliens sending spam, so stop posting bullshit all the time, keep your crap/spam to yourself.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 8th, 2007 @ 7:15am

    Re: Check them out in Outlook Express

    Like I said befoe you can only see the HTML

    (Note this isn't my E-mail address I have no Idea why I even recieved it.)




    maybe because you are a bcc?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 8th, 2007 @ 7:19am

    Re:

    liven up you fag he was only making a joke.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    identicon
    SpamIzBad, Nov 26th, 2008 @ 7:58pm

    @Killspammer

    @KillSpammer

    Actually I can explain that. David there isn't a spammer, he's the CTO of my ISP, however there was a problem with my internet around that time, which I was told by one of the techs was caused by a Zombie machine sending out mass amounts of spam.

    Now, if you find it annoying to get some of the spam, imagine being on the network of the guy sending it out. Unfortunately for both of us, their tech service is absolute shit, and it took forever for them to find and fix that(and almost every other problem). Be thankful that's your only contact with Pinetree cable... you'd be much more pissed off if you were a customer.

    Old post, I know, but I found it funny that I found this while doing a search on my ISP.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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