[Mailman-Users] Backscatter spam via the "-request" address

Brad Knowles brad at shub-internet.org
Wed Feb 25 23:48:46 CET 2009

Matt Hoskins wrote:

> Recently I've noticed spammers have started spamming the "-request"
> address on a couple of mailing lists I host. I don't know if this is
> deliberate or just they've somehow picked up the -request addresses via
> address collection mechanisms.

They send lots of spam ot *-owner, *-request, postmaster, webmaster, etc.... 
  They know that these addresses exist on most sites, and will accept mail 
from most any address.  This drives up their deliverability numbers, so that 
they can claim that they deliver to billions of addresses per second, and 
sell their services to people than want to send spam.

It's a known problem, and it's never going to go away.  It's only ever going 
to get worse.

>   1) Be able to configure the "-request" auto responder to not reply if
> there were no valid commands included in the message (the spammers
> aren't spamming with valid commands at the moment)

That sounds like a really good idea.

>   2) Be able to configure the "-request" auto responder to not reply to
> non-members

Not so sure about this one, but it might also be an idea to consider.

However, I'm not a Mailman developer, so I can't really speak to how easy it 
would be to add such features.  That might be a discussion to have over on 
the mailman-developers list.

Brad Knowles
<brad at shub-internet.org>        If you like Jazz/R&B guitar, check out
LinkedIn Profile:                 my friend bigsbytracks on YouTube at
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