Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Spam Quality

My spam count has gone up from around 15 a day to around 70 a day overnight. This is not good news.

The worst of it is that the spam just isn't such good quality any more. I was using the spam to pick up interesting names that I might use in stories. Names like Krysta Mariala, Josue U. Kerr, and Betsy Boudreaux. Now all I'm getting is Approval Department, Member Services, and Term Life Insurance Quote. I can't somehow see these as character names.

Although, why not? Thinking about it I could write a really fun story with some of those characters. Maybe I should work on it now.

14 COMMENTS:

The.Effing.Librarian said...

why not? it's just a name. "Payment Services? Are you related to Customer Services?" "I don't know. But my family has been in Services since way back."

it could be a story where super huge corporations run the world and everyone has names like departments.

fairyhedgehog said...

That's a cool idea, effing. I knew spam had to be good for something!

blogless troll said...

I've got a big list of spam names. Some of my favorites are Sonja Snow, Delmar Dickson, and Gianpaolo Pinkerton. I had to shut down that email address because I was literally getting hundreds of spam messages a day. Once they find you, I'm afraid, it's all over.

Sarah Laurenson said...

I had to find out where my e-mail address was out on a web page and ask them to take it off. That helped with getting less spam.

I like the idea of using it for character names. Never occured to me. And I'd love to read a story with names like Accounting Department. It's not so far fetched. People used to be named for their profession: Cooper, Smith, Baker.

fairyhedgehog said...

blogless, I'm hoping like hell that you're not right but I think you are. I've been so careful with that email address and I have no idea how they'll have got hold of it but there's no putting milk back into a broken bottle.

Sarah, I'm not sure there's any going back now that my address is on a spam list. I forget who suggested the spam folder as a source of names but it's a good one.

JaneyV said...

I used to get all manner of spam before my email people got their act together. I also have my filters set as high as they go. I have to say that I don't miss getting mail from Big R Cock and P Enis N Largement. But that's probably just me.

Whirlochre said...

All my spam is in Russian at the moment.

No idea whether it's promise of big bucks or penile enhancement.

fairyhedgehog said...

Jane, but you're missing all those other ones offering you fake watches and get rich quick schemes. Surely you must miss those?

fairyhedgehog said...

I've written 1000 words of a story with Matrix Direct and Halloween Candy as the Main Characters.

It's a bit of fun. I'm not sure I'm going to manage the Nano challenge though if it takes me this long to write 1k words.

Richard N said...

I hardly get any spam at all - maybe one or two per day - despite my email address being very much in the public domain because of my activities online and offline in local politics.

Time for a quick plug for something that works very well.
Kaspersky internet security suite 10... antivirus, firewall and spamtrap all in one.
Any spam that gets through the net you can forward to them as a sample so the next update will block it for everybody - and the updates are several times each day.

fairyhedgehog said...

Richard, I've got a firewall, antivirus etc. and googlemail separates out the spam for me. It's just that I usually check to see whether anything got in the spam folder by mistake and that now isn't looking very practical.

Would Kapersky handle it better?

sylvia said...

I get a couple of spam that make it through the filter each day but very very few false positives, which means I don't actually check my spam box unless I actively think I'm missing mail. We use spam assassin and I'm lucky enough to have technical people who share my mail system and look for clever ways of tracking spam.

It helps a lot, bear in mind my email address has been publicly posted since 1995. I can't see I'll ever get it off the mailing lists :)

I never thought to steal their names, that's a wonderful idea!

Richard N said...

FH, Googlemail is usually pretty good at sorting the wheat from the chaff - the only real issue being that it's got no mechanism for telling them about false positives so stuff from the same sender doesn't vanish into the bozo-bin next time as well.

Unfortunately, I can't use web-based mail for a lot of what I do as Gmail, Hotmail etc get bounced by the mailservers of a lot of the people I have dealings with... they get so much spam coming out of the various webmail servers they're often blacklisted.

fairyhedgehog said...

I didn't realise you can't add trusted senders to Google, because up till now it hasn't been an issue. My gmail address is my only live one now. I can't remember when I last used Outlook Express.

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