So you got a SPAM that includes my mail or web address in its headers. Now what does that mean? Well, nothing.
The headers contained something like
X-Mailer: Perl+Mail::Sender 0.x.xx by Jan Krynicky http://Jenda.Krynicky.czright?
This header is being used by mail clients to specify what SOFTWARE was used to send the message. If you look at the headers
of the emails you got from your friends you can find things like:
X-Mailer: Internet Mail Service (5.5.2653.19)
X-mailer: Pegasus Mail for Win32 (v3.12c)
X-Mailer: AOL 6.0 for Windows UK sub 10505
X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 5.50.4522.1200
In case you find the "Perl+Mail::Sender ..." header than the message was sent by a program in Perl, written by someone I DO NOT KNOW, that uses my library Mail::Sender. This library simplifies sending email messages containing attachments from Perl scripts/programs. I've made it during a project for which I needed to mail images requested by e-mail. I could have kept the code to myself, but I thought that others might find this useful too.
So I've added some documentation and uploaded the module to my site and later to CPAN. Of course there have been many updates and fixes since.
I know Mail::Sender has been used by Hotmail.com for quite some time, and it's still used by many other similar servers. It's being used by many companies to send emails from their Intranet systems (Cisco comes to mind), to send letters to subscribers, etc. etc. etc. There are many good uses of the module ... but ... of course ... it can be abused as well. And there is nothing I could do to prevent it. How can the module distinguish between sending a monthly letter to subscribed users from SPAM?
The module was, is and WILL BE available for FREE with no registration necessary (I'd go crazy if I had to process registration requests from all users of the module. It's rather popular. ) I have NO IDEA who's using it ... and can't control for WHAT do they use it.
You might think that this is irresponsible, but
Even though I wholeheartedly disagree with SPAMing I cannot prevent Mail::Sender's abuse. :-(
( You can find more info in the "Reading Email Headers" article on www.stopspam.org. )
P.S.: If you want to know what kind of messages do I occasionaly get, here is one.
From: "Killa187" <email@example.com> To: <Jenda@Krynicky.cz> Subject: your site =) Date sent: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 18:09:07 -0000
http://jenda.krynicky.cz/ THATS YOU. STOP SENDING ME SPAM, THE REFERENCE TO YOUR SITE SAYING THAT YOU DIDNT SEND IT IS TOTAL BULLSHIT I DO NOT WANT TO SEE YOUR NAME OR ANY REFERENCE TO YOUR SITE IN MY INBOX AGAIN YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED. I AM PISSED OFF. ALSO I HAVE BLOCKED ANY OUTGOING EMAILS THAT YOU TRY TO SEND. SO IF THEY GET THROUGH THERE WILL BE TROUBLE.
And here another:
From: "Chalender Martina" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: <Jenda@Krynicky.cz> Subject: Bull Shit Date sent: Mon, 3 Dec 2001 09:02:14 -0600
You are reckless, irresponsible, and totally immature about your actions.
"I could have kept the code to myself, but I thought ... what the heck, others may find this usefull too."
"I have NO IDEA who's using it ... and can't control for WHAT do they use it."
"Even though I wholeheartedly disagree with SPAMing I cannot prevent Mail::Sender's abuse"
What a load of bullshit. You know exactly what you're doing and how to stop someone from abusing this code. Grow up.
And in another from the same creature :
You're a fucking communist!!!
Well that explains it. I hope they hunt you down and blow you out of your cave like the rest of the towelheads. Then you'll understand what taking responsibility for your actions mean.
I don't think this needs any comment.