How do I stop my Gmail account from sending spam?
November 28, 2008 11:35 AM   Subscribe

My gmail account is sending spam to my address book. I know bc I see it sometimes ending up in my own Spam folder! How do I stop this?
posted by helios410 to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
Its not. A typical tactic of spammers is to use an existing email address or your own to spam yourself, hoping it beats the filter.

In a little while it will go away.
posted by damn dirty ape at 12:05 PM on November 28, 2008

Your email account is not sending spam. The spammers are spoofing your address in an attempt to bypass spam filtering.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 12:05 PM on November 28, 2008

It's called a Joe-Job.

There is a technology to prevent this; it's called SPF. Google is an early adopter but they are lazy and specify "?all" rather than "-all" in their SPF records. That means instead of the recipient being able to ask Google "Did you send this?" and hearing back "No." they hear back "Dunno.". Google doesn't even do "~all" which effectively means "Probably not.".

Not much you can do besides pester Google to fix their SPF records. But they probably have users who want to spoof their address from wherever they're sending, rather than send a proper SMTP envelope that will work with SPF. Too bad.

My SPF record has "-all", so nyah.

Anyway, what do you care? It got properly filtered as spam, didn't it?
posted by vsync at 12:22 PM on November 28, 2008

I'm not convinced by what the above posters have said, if as you say the account is "sending spam to [your] address book."

Because I can easily send an email to someone and make it look like it came from you [what vsync suggests]. Also, if I'm spamming *you*, I can make it look like it also came from you (as if you were emailing yourself a note) to try and beat the spam filters.

But if your records show that spam is being sent to a range of people you specifically know, from your Gmail contacts list, that suggests your account has been compromised, and I recommend changing your passwords and secret/security questions.
posted by so_necessary at 12:33 PM on November 28, 2008

If you check your sent items folder you should see that you have not sent these emails.

Also, I checked one of my spam messages supposedly sent by me and gmail helpfully told me in a bright warning that the email was probably not from who I thought it was.
posted by O9scar at 12:53 PM on November 28, 2008

O9scar you right, the messages are not in my Sent folder. I assumed it was going to my address book because the messages were apparently sent to me, by me. I changed my pword for safe measure. Thanks for the explanations everyone.
posted by helios410 at 1:16 PM on November 28, 2008

Anyway, what do you care? It got properly filtered as spam, didn't it?

This happened to my gmail account too, and the reason I care is that there are now a couple of domains that reject email from me because of the spoofing.
posted by msbrauer at 6:23 PM on November 28, 2008

there are now a couple of domains that reject email from me because of the spoofing

Then you need to send the domain admins a politely worded letter to the effect that they are utterly clueless and deserve to die forcing you to spoof your own sender address just to get past their filters doesn't help anybody in the long term.
posted by flabdablet at 5:49 AM on November 29, 2008

« Older What's the word for a musician...   |  I have this particular block o... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.