Buildtelligence and SEOCompany.com wishes to clarify a number of issues concerning unsolicited commercial e-mail messages, also known as Spam or junk mail.
First and foremost we do not use spam as a method of marketing. We abhor spam. We openly hate spammers and we are actively involved in the Internet Community to stop and prevent spam.
In general we believe that you should NEVER purchase products or services from spammers. It only encourages them to continue to spam. Further as a search engine optimization company we caution you specifically from doing business with any SEO company that sends you spam. Read this excerpt taken from
Google’s Webmaster Guidelines:
Be wary of SEO firms and web consultants or agencies that send you email out of the blue.
Amazingly, we [google] get these spam emails too:
I visited your website and noticed that you are not listed in most of the major search engines and directories…”
Reserve the same skepticism for unsolicited email about search engines as you do for “burn fat at night” diet pills or requests to help transfer funds from deposed dictators.
This webpage explains what Spam is and the views and responsibilities of Buildtelligence and SEO Company on the subject. For more information about Spam in general, please see the Links provided at the end of this document.
Who is Responsible?
What to do?
Spam is not merely annoying and time consuming: it is also a serious drain on the resources and bandwidth of ISPs, other organizations, and Internet users. Sending Spam mail may seem like an inexpensive and convenient way to amplify marketing efforts, yet honest businesses rarely employ this questionable marketing tool. Firstly, nobody wishes to receive unsolicited junk mail. Secondly, it is considered both an annoyance and an intrusion of privacy. Thirdly, each sent e-mail message contributes to Internet traffic and uses up bandwidth. An e-mail message does not reach its recipient instantaneously; instead, it is relayed by any number of systems en route until it reaches its final destination. Spam mail is often sent out in thousands or hundreds of thousands of copies, to huge numbers of unwitting recipients. This large load of messages often causes network problems and congestion, meaning that third parties as well as message recipients are suffering because some inconsiderate person or company has sent half a million copies of a message through the Internet. Unfortunately, there are many such worthless members of society. Further and just as unfortunate is that the spam problem will not go away easily until people that receive spam stop buying products and services from the spammers. If a spammer sends out 500,000 messages and gets back $200.00 in sales was it worth it? Most likely the spammer will just try and send 3 million to increase their odds on making more. until the day comes when they send out a spam and get nothing back they will continue to utilize this nasty form of advertising because frankly it works for them.
Special warning: just because an spammer claims to be from a SEO Company does not mean that they are from SEOCompany.com just like if a spammer said they are from a Tire Company doesn’t mean they are from TireCompany.com
For further information on Spam, refer to the links at the end of this document for some excellent reviews and ways you can help solve the problem.
Who is Responsible?
Email Spam is a difficult issue. Spammers rarely use their regular e-mail addresses for the following reasons, among others:
- Their Internet Service Providers will realize they are Spamming, and will take steps to prevent future Spam (for example, by deleting Spammer’s e-mail accounts)
Spammers could become the victims of mail-bombing, as thousands of irate Spam recipients strike back with messages of their own. Spammers therefore rely on anonymous e-mail addresses such as those available from free e-mail providers like gmail, yahoo and the like. Sometimes the addresses you see on Spam messages are invalid (faked). It is important to realize where the responsibility for Spam lies. Make no mistake: Spammers are often reasonably skilled frauds and thieves as well as highly annoying. Many Spammers have developed specific strategies of Spamming in order to avoid responsibility for their actions, or to avoid mail blocking and filtering.
- They relay Spam messages off the mail server of an innocent third party, in which case even more damage is incurred by the on-line population in general. This technique requires an “open relay”. It is Buildtelligence’s policy to avoid open relays entirely. Our servers are constantly checked to make sure that an open relay condition does not exist for our domains or the domains of those that we host.
- Spammers use the “drop box” strategy. This consists of sending mail out from an account that allows Spam, but putting another address in the “Reply to:” message header, so that anyone replying to the message is actually sending mail to an account that did not originate the Spam. Many Spammers want to send out ads or sales info and do not expect a reply. By drop boxing they are forging their e-mail addresses and relieving themselves of accountability. Recipients of Spam should always check the full message headers to determine the origin of the Spam.
- Spam Spoofing. This fairly complex technique makes a message appear as if it is coming from an address that did not originate the message.
- Claimed Innocence by including a paragraph claiming that the law sanctions Spam as long as there is a “remove from list” address in the Spam message, or similar variations of this obtuse argument. Do not fall for this trick, as the “remove from list” address is almost always a sham. Not only do you generate useless traffic if you try to remove yourself from a large number of “lists”, but in some cases Spammers will be delighted to put an “active”; mark next to your name on their address databases upon receipt of your complaint. Spammers are dishonest people employing dishonest tactics. Don’t trust them, report them.
- Buildtelligence cannot accept responsibility for spoofing, or Spammers who define a fake series of message headers to create the illusion that a message is coming from a particular site innocent of Spamming.
- For example, user firstname.lastname@example.org is sending out half a million messages a day in order to advertise his miserable pyramid scheme. His Spam messages, however, look as if they are coming from email@example.com, because the message headers have been falsified or the message has been spoofed.
What can you do?
The most important thing is to examine your full message headers to determine where the message really came from. The “From:” header that is commonly shown in basic message header displays can be easily faked! It is harder to fake the complete message header, which can provide useful information about the message. Most email clients (outlook, etc.) allows users to see the full message headers of all e-mail messages.
Spoofing is beyond the absolute control and responsibility of Buildtelligence. We will do the utmost to prevent Spam, and never send spam ourselves but we ask the recipients of junk mail to understand that Buildtelligence (SEOCompany.com) is not the originator of such messages, but one of the victims! The solutions to spoofing are complex and involve co-operation between a number of Web sites and ISPs. Refer to the links below for more information.
- http://www.cauce.org — the Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial Email (CAUCE), one of the valiant organizations dedicated to fighting Spam. Includes information on Spam and how to prevent it. Lend your support to this worthy cause or one like it!
- http://www.mail-abuse.org (Now at ers.trendmicro.com) — Mail Abuse Prevention System, a non-profit organization whose mission is to defend the Internet against Spammers. Take a look at their Realtime Blackhole List (RBL) information
- http://www.tincher.to/antispam.htm — Comprehensive links and information on Spam
- http://www.mail-abuse.org/rbl/manage.html (Now at ers.trendmicro.com) — Ethical management of mailing lists
- http://www.cauce.org — Various resources on the Internet to help in the fight against Spam
Determining the origin of Spam
It is extremely important to identify the origin of a message. A useful technique in doing this is the correct analysis of the message headers contained in every e-mail message, which provide useful information on the message’s origin and path. A little training is required to read message headers, but the links below should furnish the necessary information in a matter of minutes:
- http://email.about.com/cs/spamgeneral/a/spam_headers.htm — Tracing Spam and reading message headers– Who do I complain to?
- http://cynthiaarmistead.com/headers/headers.shtml — reading message headers
- http://netdemon.net/tutorials/whois.txt — WHOIS, one of the most useful tools for tracking down a Spammer’s location
- http://www.scambusters.org/stopspam/index.html – 7 Tips to Help You Reduce or Stop Spam