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[vox] SpamArrest.com Interesting Article
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[vox] SpamArrest.com Interesting Article



Hi,

I couldnt help myself posting this article which i read
through one of my Linux newsletter


============================================================================
===
Scumbag of the Week
============================================================================
===

SpamArrest.com.  Remember them?  I talked endlessly about how wonderful they
are
in a previous Gazette issue, and even ran their banners here at JimWorld for
a
few months.  Their "service" did such good a job on my inbox, that I just
had to
tell you about it.  Thanks to SpamArrest.com, I have a spam-free inbox,
which is
great... for me.  Not so great for everyone that emails me, though.  It was
pointed out to me by one of our members (dax) that SpamArrest was not all
that
they claimed to be.  So, I did some digging, and lo and behold, dax was
right.


The way that SpamArrest works is that when you are one of their customers,
they
download all of the email from your real inbox.  Then, they check it against
their database, and make available to you the messages from individuals that
you
have approved.  For the remaining email messages, SpamArrest sends an email
message to them, asking them to verify themselves.  If they do (by clicking
a
link in the email message and entering a password), their email is also made
available to you.  The net result in my case, was that out of the 8,000+
emails
a day that I receive, only the 100 or so that are from people that I like
actually get into my inbox.  Beautiful, right?  Well the ugly part is that
SpamArrest is able to build, based on which individuals went through that
verification process, a list of thousands of email addresses that are valid,
read by a person, and more importantly, read by a person that would click on
a
link in the email.  Unbeknownst to me, and most SpamArrest customers, is
that
while SpamArrest is protecting me from spam, they're secretly harvesting the
email addresses of everyone that has validated themselves to be allowed to
email
me.  SPAMARREST HAS BEEN SPAMMING THAT LIST.  On one hand, they protect me,
and
on the other hand, they're spamming all of the people that I "white listed"
and
trust.  Screwing me, and annoying my contacts in the process.  While they've
not
yet admitted to selling this list off, I can only imagine that's going to be
their next step.  While this policy is alluded to within their privacy
policy,
the privacy policy is NOT made available at all to people as they verify
themselves (verification page example:
http://spamarrest.com/a?107411106:76542).
 Very shady indeed.


SpamArrest has not responded to my email messages or phone calls in relation
to
these findings.  Their owner has made some public statements, however, which
are
quite alarming...


"Our privacy policy states that we are allowed to contact "senders", that
is,
the people who send our customers e-mail.  Please refer the section entitled
"HOW DO WE USE THE PERSONAL INFORMATION WE COLLECT?".


.. and ...

"Every person who got this e-mail from us has either sent an e-mail to one
of
our customers, or been added to one of our customer's white list
explicitly."


I have stopped using spamarrest, and am looking at alternative solutions to
my
uncontrollable inbox.  I recommend that anyone that's using spamarrest.com's
service stop doing so immediately, and look for another way out.  Right now,
I'm
evaluating a program called "Spam Bully" that apparently operates much like
spamarrest, but without using a 3rd party server, so the information is all
kept
privately on your own computer.

------------------------------

Karthikeyan B

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