March 24, 2006Idiot Italian Spammer
I happened to see a spam message that not only did so many things badly, but it was a complete waste of bytes and bandwidth. And, boy, did he waste bandwidth!
It comes from an Italian computer retail store called Tutto Computer. If that were in the States, I think it would be called "Everything Computer." I wish I knew Italian so I could call this guy whatever "Everything Stupid" would be in Italian.
- He mailed batches of 1000 messages. How do I know? He included the alphabetical selection of 1000 addresses in the To: field of the message. My address was between those whose user names started with "ch" and "de." That list, which was sent with every freakin' message occupied more than 28,000 bytes per message. It also exposes those 1000 addresses to each recipient in that block. It's an international group, with domains from Italy, Portugal, Spain, Brazil, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Romania, Canada, and dozens more, including the worldwide .com and .org domains. If any one of those recipient's PCs is infected with a typical virus, that virus will harvest all 1000 addresses from the email file or Web page cache.
- Speaking of harvesting, a kind of disclaimer indicates that this spammer intentionally harvested email addresses from Web pages. I believe he has made the assumption that displaying one's address on a Web page is the equivalent of opting in to his list.
- He's trying to be international with his offering, but does so in the most ludicrous way. The offering is made, obviously, initially in Italian. But then he includes translated copies of the offering in English, German, French, and Spanish. Now, I have no quibble with someone trying to be multi-lingual. But pleeeeeze do not rely on computer translations (such as Babelfish) to do all the work of the translation. The English, for instance, is practically unintelligible (capitalization preserved for your enjoyment):
KIND CUSTOMER, I WRITE TO THEM IN ORDER TO INTRODUCE THEM THE FUTURE OF COMPUTER SCIENCE TO THE BEST PRICES ON THE MARKET.
WE ARE A COMPANY IN EXPANSION WITH A LARGE One WE WANT TO MAKE TO GROW The MARKET Of the COMPUTERS And TO MAKE TO LOWER the PRICES Of COMPUTER SCIENCE IN KIND.
IF WE DO NOT DISTURB IT TOO MUCH WE WILL BE LIETI TO MAKE TO VISIT THEM OUR SITUATED OF SALE ON LINENS IN DAILY INCREASE, And WILL BE MUCH HAPPY IF HE WANTED TO COMMENT OUR PRODUCTS GIVING To US COSì WAY TO IMPROVE, And COSì MAKING TO IMPROVE The GENERAL ECONOMY OF A BY NOW COMMON INTEREST To MANY.
With this message originating from Italy, I'm assuming this spammer couldn't give a rat's butt that this message violates several provisions of the U.S. CAN-SPAM law. I'd also wager that it violates at least one provision of the European Community Directive and Italy's implementation thereof.
But, hey, this guy runs a computer store, so he's gonna use the technology to promote it. I believe the name applies in both English and Italian: Idiot.Posted on March 24, 2006 at 04:35 PM