[Mailman-Users] Spam to list owners

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Fri Feb 1 22:24:02 CET 2008

Mel Sojka writes:

 > Folks I have an old server that is being hosted for a client. Because of 
 > Phyton version it is running mailman 2.1.5 under sendmail. For some 
 > unknown reason there seems to be a massive amount of spam going to the 
 > list owner.

You can change the visible list owner address from $POST-MAILBOX-owner
to something else, which will work for a while.  However, the list
owner address needs to be visible to members, at least, and in
principle it has to accept spam content (so that members can forward
you a spam post saying "look what got through!")  So whatever vector
got your list-owner on a spammer's list is likely to eventually "out"
this one, too.

 > Is there some method in this version to stop this abuse. 

There is no way to stop random individuals from sending mail to your
host, except to disconnect it from the Internet.  All you can do is
refuse it or filter it.  Both of which make it possible that you've
refused or discarded legitmate mail.  You have to decide for yourself
the balance between the volume of unwanted mail a human has to process
against the risk of missing mail you want to see.

The best strategy seems to be to have a good Bayesian filter at the
level of the MTA and to train it regularly with new spam and new ham.

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