Junk e-mail commonly known as "spam", is an increasing problem on the internet, far more so than postal junk mail. Blacksburg.Net employees several techniques to diminish somewhat the onslaught of annoying spam. One of these is a series of widely used spam blacklists to block mail servers that are known sources of spam. These blacklists include NJABL blacklist (http://njabl.org/). the Spamhaus blacklist (http://www.spamhaus.org), dsn.rfc-ignorant.org ( http://www.rfc-ignorant.org) note this list is subject of to change. We block email from the list of dialup ports at dialup.relays.orsirus.com (dialup customers use their providers outgoing mail server in contrast to spammers who often send directly from their PC). We filter for Spam using SpamAssassin and for viruses (but our virus filter is not guaranteed and probably will not catch all viruses we strongly recommend that all our customers run an antivirus program on their computer). We also have some tests for correctly setup mail servers and valid envelope From addresses. Further we have our own block list of mail servers and From addresses that have sent significant amounts of spam to Blacksburg.Net in the past.

Unfortunately, any technique that is sufficiently useful to stop a significant amount of spam, may occasionally stop a valid desired email, there is no way around this. We can on a per customer basis turn off spam blacklist blocking, but it is an all or nothing, that is all blacklists for all origins, not just for mail from your friend in say Taiwan. If you would like us not apply blacklists to your incoming email, please let us know and we can do so by marking you as a "SPAMFRIEND" on our mail server. The SPAMFRIEND option however does not turn off the tests for correctly setup mail servers, valid envelope From addresses, and our local blocking list. In addition we are now employing a scoring content filter (SpamAssassin) that block emails with an extremely high probability of being spam.

If you are the recipient of repeated spams from one source let us know (and send us several copies of different messages with complete headers) and we will add the source to our block lists if possible.  As a reminder also our "Terms of Service" strictly forbids sending spam via Blacksburg.Net and is grounds for immediate termination of your account. Similarly websites hosted by Blacksburg.Net may not be advertised by spam, "spamvertized" even if the spam does not pass through Blacksburg.Net's mail server. (If we were tolerant of spam in any form, Blacksburg.Net might end up on one more spam blacklists, like several so called "rogue spamfriendly" ISPs have.)

Here is a the "SPAM FAQ" http://members.aol.com/emailfaq/emailfaq.html which gives more information about spam and dealing with it.

For the more technically minded the following website has information about spam and determing where is came from. http://www.claws-and-paws.com/spam-l/tracking.html as well as this website: http://digital.net/~gandalf/spamfaq.html

Where to report spam.

Once you received a spam, you might to report it to the appropriate agencies that have the authority to investigate. Here are some suggested places to redirect or forward spam.

Stock scams and investment advice
Securities and Exchange Commission: enforcement@sec.gov
General Spam - Spamarchive
Spamarchive provides a database of known spam to be used for testing, developing, and benchmarking anti-spam tools: Forward as an attachment to submit@spamarchive.org
Illegal sales of drugs, medical devices, biological products, foods, dietary supplements, or cosmetics.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA): webcomplaints@ora.fda.gov
Email Chain letters pyramid schemes
USPS, fraud@uspis.gov, and FTC. Info about chain letters at: http://www.interleaves.org/~rteeter/pyramid.html.
Spams for Systemworks, Norton, and other Symantec products
Symantec spamwatch: spamwatch@symantec.com
How to Report E-Scams and Hoaxes to the FBI
Nigerian - African scams (The so called 419 scams).
The 419 coalition: 419.fcd@usss.treas.gov
Child pornography
US department of Justice, or International reporting sites
General scam oriented spam (Work-At-Home, Weight Loss,Credit Repair Offers, Advance Fee Loan Scams, etc.)
Federal Trade Commission (FTC): uce@ftc.gov

And to the senders ISP (see the above FAQs for advice on how to determine the ISP).
Reporting spams to the ISP hosting the spammer. Complain to the sender's ISP. Many ISPs want to cut off spammers who abuse their syst em. Again, make sure to include a copy of the message and header information and stat e that you're complaining about spam. "abuse@the_isp_domain" or the reporting address on their web site.

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