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Other Problems

There are a few other ways that a malicious user can abuse mail and news.

One way is to ``mail-bomb'' a person. A classic mail-bomb consists of sending either several very large files (tens of megabytes) or a very large number of messages to a specific person. The intent of this attack is to destroy their ability to read mail. The attack may either fill up the disk holding the victim's mail so he or she can't receive any more email, or fill their mailbox with so many messages that the victim's computer or mail program can't keep up.

If you're being mail-bombed, please contact the CNG. We can help you set up filters which may deflect mail-bombs. In some cases we may also be able to contact the administrators of the machine you're being bombed from, and stop the bombing from the remote end.

A problem related to mail-bombing is unsolicited or abusive email. If you receive such email, you should request the sender to stop. If the sender refuses, simply ignoring such email is often the best course of action. As with mail-bombs, we may be able to help you set up a filter to automatically throw away such email. If the email persists, is threatening or sexually abusive, please let the CNG know and we will pursue remedies on the administrative or legal level.

A common abuse of news is to post the same article to numerous news groups, often including groups which are not related to the topic or the article. This is known as ``spam''. You should simply ignore spam, don't get sucked into making the problem worse by responding to it.

You should be very careful not to spam. If you do spam, you'll likely get mail-bombed. (As a matter of fact, a common trick to mailbomb somebody is to forge spam which appears to come from them, resulting in the victim being mail-bombed by angry news readers).


next up previous contents
Next: Some Computing Related Legal Up: Email (and News) Previous: Privacy

Del Armstrong
Fri Oct 25 16:31:41 EDT 1996