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4:24pm on Thursday, 5th March, 2009:

31 Pages


I checked my mud.co.uk email today from the university, from where I can get web access to it. My anti-spam filters only work in Outlook, though, so I had 31 pages (of 50 messages per page except the last one) of mainly garbage to look through.

I've experimented with several methods to make deleting the spam easier, and have found that the best one is to order the messages by size, largest first. Here's what was on the pages when I did that today:

1 Actual emails; messages for mailing lists I asked to be on; messages from mailing lists I never asked to be on; ads from bona fide companies.
2 Ditto.
3 Ditto, plus phishing attempts (banks).
4 Ditto, including the phishing attempts (banks) but minus the actual emails.
5 Ads from bona fide companies; phishing attempts (banks); sex pills.
6 Sex pills.
7 Casinos.
8 Casinos.
9 Sex pills; casinos.
10 Casinos; phishing attempts (Walmart, Amazon)
11 Phishing attempts (Amazon, iTunes); sex pills posing as "product confirmation" emails.
12 Ditto.
13 Fake undergraduate degrees; casinos.
14 Casinos; software; sex pills.
15 Weight loss pills; software; sex pills masquerading as "men's health".
16 Watches.
17 Ditto.
18 Ditto.
19 Ditto.
20 Watches; fake postgraduate degrees.
21 Fake postgraduate degrees.
22 Sex pills (subject lines in hilariously broken English).
23 Ditto.
24 Sex pills (subject line containing the word "orgasm" with assorted letters doubled up).
25 Ditto.
26 Ditto, plus two actual emails.
27 Some kind of sex-enhancing "strip", I've no idea what. All these ads claimed to come from FedEx and had single-word film titles (eg. "Bambi") as their subject line.
28 Ditto, plus the same ads pretending to be Facebook messages.
29 Watches; drugs for <richard@mud.co.uk> (or whatever mud.co.uk address they had made up).
30 Drugs for <richard@mud.co.uk>; 90% off for <richard@mud.co.uk>; sex pills.
31 Shoes.

Takeaway: if it's small, it's spam.

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Copyright © 2009 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).