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RE: Anti-spam email links in Javascript


From: Terence de Giere
Date: Apr 16, 2004 9:47AM

Besides obfusticating an email address in various ways, some of which
are not accessible, there are other ways of handling spam, although a
slight inconvenience or an annoyance for those wanting to contact you
may be a side-effect the first time they try to contact you.

There are applications like Zaep that check for valid e-mail addresses
before accepting an e-mail; if it is valid, it sends out an e-mail
message (which you can customize) with a software key to the person
contacting you for confirmation that they actually sent you a message
from that address. If they reply the system then lets email from that
particular address through from that time on. Ranges of IP addresses can
also be specified as safe for receipt of e-mail. Messages blocked are
archived and sorted until deleted and statistics generated.

There is the cost of licensing software, which can be done on a
CPU-by-CPU basis. And the main drawback is some users are annoyed when
receiving an e-mail message that tells them their e-mail will only be
delivered to you if they respond to the verification e-mail, which
typically involves visiting a site from a passkey link in the e-mail.
Once they visit the site, they see a web page confirming that their
email will then be allowed from then on. It would appear that this
particular system involves the software vendor's server to display the
confirmation message page and send the passkey to the anti-spam
application on your computer to unblock that e-mail address.

As with any system there could be unanticipated problems, or problems
with the users network which does not allow visiting the confirmation
web page.

If JavaScript is used to obfusticate e-mail addresses, somewhere from 5
percent to 10 percent of users will not be able to communicate with you,
as they do not have it, or have it turned off.

Terence de Giere

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