Feeds

Sp@m: the myst.eries xp1ained!!! By Stob

How the stripes get in the toothpaste

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Stob (Previously: Verity Stob has travelled deep into Essex to meet Sam ‘The Spam’ Osborne, England’s first spamillionaire.)

Inside the house, I expected a typical wealthy Essex businessman’s abode: crossed sawn-offs over a granite mantel, 300 inch widescreen TVs in every tennis court, more fake marble than you could shake a building society branch at.

But it wasn’t like that at all. The place had an institutional quality to it: glass doors opening on tidy little offices, a server cupboard filled with blinking LEDs and air conditioning noise, a disabled loo. Osborne led me to a large room containing 10 or 20 people, all seated at PCs.

"Before we go in I should warn you that… that we have a policy of giving jobs to folks who haven’t been as lucky in life as we have. Please don’t be alarmed by anything."

I was alarmed. I nervously followed Osborne into the room.

"Come and meet Helen. She’s our longest serving employee."

Osborne indicated a frail-looking, middle-aged woman sat at a PC in the far corner. Even as he pointed, she gave a faint groan and collapsed forward, head lolling gracelessly on her keyboard. Appalled, I started towards her, but Osborne put out his hand to stop me.

Nobody else took any notice at all.

As I drew breath to express outrage, the woman called Helen twitched, sat up, gazed at the screen blearily for a moment, and then continued typing.

Osborne said quietly into my ear: "Narcolepsy. Quite safe, in this form. Helen prefers that we ignore her 'interludes'. It seems like the kindest thing. Come and see."

We tiptoed up to Helen, and gazed over her shoulder at her screen. She was composing an email. It could not be said that her condition did not interfere with her work. She had typed:

Absolutely No Doctor's Prescription Needed!
Phentermine, Viagra, Soma, Ambien, Floricet, Imitrex, Paxil, Prozac, Zoloft...

leeuwenhoek xqpfbviztf x d r naqzzgqkkjt tfqjatcc

and many many more prescription drugs!

"Oh," I said, suddenly enlightened, "is this why one so often gets whole lines of gobbledygook in spam? Because Helen has, erm, encountered a pause? I thought it was a dodge to defeat checksum-based spam filters."

Osborne said, "You’d be surprised how many people think that. But do come and meet Michael." He tugged me towards another corner of the room.

Michael was about 30 years old and rather overweight. He wore a shell suit and the pleasant, guileless smile of a person disadvantaged by learning difficulties. He smelled of wee, but no worse than the people who sit next to you on the Tube.

"Hello Michael," said Osborne. "This lady has come all the way from London to see you do your typing. Will you show her?’

"Michael type good," said Michael. He furrowed his brow, protruded a furled tongue and with unbearable deliberation picked out an email:

ADD I.NCHE.S WITH OUR P.I.L.L!
STIL NO LUCK E*N*L*A*R*G*I*N*G IT????
Our pr’oduct will work 4U!!!!!!!!!!!

"Well done Michael," I said enthusiastically. "That’s very good. Is it true you like sweet things?" And I gave him the chocolate bar that Osborne had quietly passed to me while Michael was struggling to find his eighth consecutive shriek-stop.

I asked Osborne: "Can we talk about this somewhere?"

"In a moment. First let’s see what Mr Bank is up to."

Mr Bank was a thin, grey-haired bald-pated man in a velvet jacket. He was typing rapidly.

Osborne put his mouth near my ear and whispered: "Thinks he’s Jane Austen reincarnated. Not our most productive worker."

By this time the report of the accident had spread among the workmen and boatmen about the Cobb, and many were collected near them, to be useful if wanted; at any rate, to enjoy the sight of a dead young lady, nay, two dead young ladies, for it proved twice as fine as the first report.
ARE YOU ASHAMED OF YOUR PENIS?
To some of the best-looking of these good people Henrietta was consigned, for, though partially revived, she was quite helpless; and in this manner, Anne walking by her side, and Charles attending to his wife, they set forward, treading back, with feelings unutterable, the ground which so lately, so very lately, and so light of heart, they had passed along.
THIS REALLY WORKS!

I said: "But I was sure that was to defeat Bayesian blocking. I never thought…"

Osborne silenced me with a finger. "Come into my office and we’ll talk about it."

[To be continued] ®

Reducing security risks from open source software

More from The Register

next story
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
Delaware pair nabbed for getting saucy atop Mexican eatery
Burrito meets soft taco in alleged rooftop romp outrage
Japanese artist cuffed for disseminating 3D ladyparts files
Printable genitalia fall foul of 'obscene material' laws
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Brit Rockall adventurer poised to quit islet
Occupation records broken, champagne corks popped
Accused! Yahoo! exec! SUES! her! accuser!, says! sex! harassment! never! happened!
Allegations were for 'financial gain', countersuit claims
Yahoo! Japan! launches! service! for! the! dead!
If you're reading this email, I am no longer alive
Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land
Bold, barmy Brit adventurer Nick Hancock escapes North Atlantic islet
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.