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I have the IP address of a scammer (I convinced them to hit my web server) whose mail made it through my filters and would like to do something meaningful about it. Can I? I thought about telling their ISP, but dig -x shows the netblock owner as a giant telecoms company. Have any of you had success in the past with bringing some form of justice to these bottom feeders?

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"convinced them to hit my web server" - sounds like you're asking for trouble... – Ben Pilbrow Dec 16 '10 at 20:46
@Ben: Just mail with embedded img tags...Curiosity is a powerful thing. – nmichaels Dec 16 '10 at 20:49
If you go out fishing for such things you can hardly complain when you catch one. – John Gardeniers Dec 17 '10 at 0:25
@John: They sent me scammy mail (that made it through the filters) first. I just replied. I'm not complaining about having caught one; I just want to know what to do with it. – nmichaels Dec 17 '10 at 14:12
up vote 8 down vote accepted

If the dig report has an abuse address, send a detailed account of what happened to it. Send the IP address, dates & times, what the scammer sent you, and any reasonable information. Leave your opinion out, stick to the facts. Don't expect a response, except the usual automated one.

Past that, not much. Black-hole that IP and hope they stay away. Many ISPs do take reports of abuse very seriously.

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I was hoping for some secret international law enforcement agency known only to sysadmins, but this will have to do. – nmichaels Dec 16 '10 at 20:51
Closest thing to that is Spamhaus. My first round of filtering is just checking their zen and drop DBs, that catches 99% with minimal server load. – Chris S Dec 16 '10 at 20:56
@NMichaels - there is no cabal. – mfinni Dec 16 '10 at 21:19
If ISPs have clients mass spamming and they don't respond to places like Spamhaus, they may find their IP netblocks in these RBL systems for mail servers to block. is a good RBL as well. – Imo Dec 16 '10 at 21:58

Like ChrisS said, you should definitely forward the message to the ISP. In addition, since phishing/spamming/whathaveyou is technically illegal, you can also file a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center. I would not expect your single complaint to be acted upon. However, it files the information so it can be used as part of a larger investigation should one occur.

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