Technically Speaking

Rex Dixon – Professional BlogCaster

Spam Fry Friday – original post date – 9/1/2006

Posted by rexdixon on September 3, 2006

SPAM, yummy stuff if you fry it up in a pan and then cover it in baked beans. What I use to do is actually cover it in beanie weenies. This was eons ago when I was first out of the Navy and working for a government contractor back east in Maryland. Now of course, I’m sure you didn’t tune in here today to read about SPAM receipes right?

The spam I refer to of course is that dreaded stuff we all get in our e-mail. Why do people even bother to spam? Well that can be easily answered as we all know it does work a small percentage of the time. You can’t blame the internet for this. Spam has been around as long as the US postal service started delivering mail. When those marketing genius’ out there said “Why not just send a ton of junk mail to everyone?” Someone eventually answers that one piece, and there you jusitify the cost for it all. Spam or junk mail in your snail mail. The same holds true for Email, a small percentage of people actually end up buying some penny stock, or getting their Zoloft, Viagra, Vicodin, etc. from the spammers company.

The most preferred method that spammers use is called spoofing. You can read a great article at cert.org telling you exactly how that works. Basically, you just hide your e-mail address from the people you are sending it too. You end up looking like you could very well be – vice_president@whitehouse.gov – sending you the message. It’s fun stuff to do if you want to pull tricks on your friends. What is not fun is the fact that spammers have been using this above method that you can read in depth at this URL here for years now. Probably as long as there has been spam, there has been spoofing/forging of Email addresses.

Now some people will say that there is no good to spam whatsoever. I think differently. I’m writing this blog so you probably figured by now that I would say that, right? Here is why I think spam is good in at least one way that I can think of off the top of my head.

The main reason that I believe spam is good is the fact that it has created JOBS! Yes, if it wasn’t for spam, there would be some software programmers writing code for something that didn’t help people or worse – not even working as a programmer! Every single day there are currently employed programmers writing code on how to stop spam. In the same token there are hackers out there writing code to get past those spam fighting programs. All in all, people are coding around one issue and discovering more things that wouldn’t be found if it wasn’t for the need of spammers to guarantee a way for their spam to arrive at your inbox and not in your junk mail box.

One of the first things spam programs do is key in on keywords. Lately spammers have been getting around that with gooblygook. Some programs have yet to pick up on it. Most have figured out that easy scheme. There are times you get e-mail with total nonsense as either the address, or the subject. Better yet, some spam you receive the first line has something like – akaijhehjaks – in it. That is just one way to get around the spam catchers. Most of the current ones have figured that easy method out, some still are letting a few slip through.

How do you stop spam? Basically, you won’t. Have you stopped junk mail from coming in your snail mail? Nope. As long as there are advertisers, people selling penny stock, Viagra, or what not – there will be spam. Unfortuantely, if you think it’s all bad, reread the above paragraph on the reason I think it is good. It keeps some programmers who would be out of work – employed. I believe that still working in the IT industry is a good thing; at least Technically Speaking.

Biznik – business networking

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One Response to “Spam Fry Friday – original post date – 9/1/2006”

  1. […] It seems like a long long time ago, but at one time Rex Dixon did say it helps to keep programmers employed. Do you remember back to those early days of Technically Speaking? […]

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