Media praise for Stopping Spam

"A good read and a useful resource for the PC user."
--Computer Shopper, April 2002

" a valuable book on an important subject."
--Ken Fermoyle, PC Clubhouse News, January 2001

"an excellent tutorial on tracing and responding to Spam"
--Scott Atwood in San Jose Mercury News, Dec 29, 2000

"This book is much more than the fluff piece I expected. They've done an excellent job of retelling the history of span, and it makes quite entertaining reading...It's taking a long time, but I think the spam situation is going to get better. If you buy this entertaining and fact-filled book, you can learn how to help make that happen."
--Ron Burke, Window Developers Journal, April 1999

"After three years of get-rich-quick books on how to send spam, a definitve work on its deterrence is long overdue. So much so that while I napped on a shuttle flight from Silicon Valley to Redmond, my copy of 'Stopping Spam' disappeard from the seat next to me."
--Paul Boutin, Wired, March 1999

"This well-researched, clearly written, and carefully planned book belongs on the reference shelf of those with general duties as well as those who handle computer crimes."
--Ronald L. Mendell, Security Management, March 1999

"If you are tired of having useless emails fill up your mailbox, or you are no longer able to find on-topic postings in once-helpful newsgroups, then this book will be useful to you ... if your email or newsgroup diet consists of too much spam, this will help you reduce your intake and make the Net much leaner as well."
--Keith Schengili-Roberts, Computer Paper, February 1999

"This book is enjoyable to read and gives you an important weapon in your battle against spammers."
--Link-UP, February 1999

"'Stopping Spam' may be the most liberating work since the Magna Carta"
--The Marcus Letter, December 1998

"The first comprehensive book dealing with the problem of Spam. This book explains the whole range of options available to fight back against spam."
--Suzanne Smith, San Diego Union-Tribune, December 8, 1998

"'Stopping Spam' is an excellent resource, suitable for the new user or the experienced admin. It covers the history of spam fighting as well as the latest anti-spam techniques. Technical issues are covered in depth, yet the reading is easy. In short, 'Stopping Spam' should be read by anyone who uses email, Usenet, or the World Wide Web."
--Cancelmoose, Author of NoCeM anti-spam software

"The authors of 'Stopping Spam' are nothing short of arms merchants, supplying long-needed defensive weapons to be used in the war against unsolicited bulk email. This book offers something for everyone--quite approachable by novices, yet holding some surprised for experts."
--Paul Vixie, Creator of the Mail Abuse Prevention System RealTime Blackhold List (MAPS RBL)

"THERE'S A new bible for Internet users: 'Stopping Spam' by Alan Schwartz and Simson Garfinkel.You're going to love it. If you've been on the Net for longer than a month or two, you know the heartache of spam. Useless, unsolicited messages promising everything from hot sex on-line to a million dollars in 10 days pile up in your mailbox. Responding to them just gets you more junk mail; the return addresses are often bogus.

I haven't written about spam in a long time, not because you don't ask about it constantly but because I despaired of being able to provide you with suggestions that might make an actual dent in the E-trash.

After 20 minutes of reading this book, I had a dozen pages marked for later use. After two hours, I quit marking them; they're ALL that good. 'Stopping Spam' (O'Reilly, $19.95, or 1-800-998-9938, 9-8 weekdays) came out in October, but it's still a great overview of how bulk E-mail and news group postings work, how this horrible trend got started and what you can do about it.

Schwartz and Garfinkel have a clear, entertaining writing style that all of us can read, regardless of our technical experience.

The advice runs from basic to highly esoteric, including a chapter for people who run E-mail systems. Still, you'll never have problems following along, thanks to careful explanations of terms and some great real-life analogies.

For instance, the authors compare step-by-step the dialogue that two computers have passing along E-mail on the Net to the dialogue you have when you call up a restaurant to make a reservation.

The book begins by detailing why spam is such a huge problem. It's more than an annoyance; it's a threat to the usefulness of the Internet and a drain on the resources of every service provider.

Spam was first predicted by an Internet pioneer in 1975, long before most of us were aware the Net existed. His descriptions of how unwanted messages would annoy were grim but accurate.

The book details several high-profile early spams. (Remember the 'I have a great collection of child pornography' messages? Or the lawyers who advertised their representation in the green card lottery on every news group on the Net? Consider yourself lucky if you don't.)

In plain English, the book tells how to avoid and eliminate E-mail and news group spam.

The suggestions include how to protect your E-mail address from getting out in the first place, how to tweak your E-mail filters to shunt aside incoming spam and how to use spam bait pages to add to spammers' burdens.

The authors talk about how to find out where the message really came from and how to complain effectively to the companies that give the spammer Internet access. (Spamming violates most Internet providers' contracts with their customers, so complaining can make the bulk mail stop coming.)

Finally, they go over software that may help you de-spam, most of which is cheap or free.

Schwartz and Garfinkel wrap up by considering long-term solutions to spam, from Net community action to legislation.

The bad news is that getting rid of spam isn't easy, and this book doesn't gloss over the difficulty. The good news is that this book contains the tools to drastically cut down on the unwanted mail or postings you have to read."
--By Heather Newman, Detroit Fress Press, May 1999,

"'Stopping Spam' is O'Reilly's newest book, which exclusively covers the topic of spam, or unwanted e-mails and postings to Usenet.

It's written for anyone at any skill level - if you're a novice, you might enjoy reading about some more infamous spammers of the past, like Jeff Slaton or Canter and Siegel aka "The Greencard Spammers". If you're more at the intermediate level, you'll find the sections on how to safeguard your e-mail address and filter your e-mail especially valuable. If you're a system administrator, you'll find tips for securing your mail and news servers against unauthorized use by spammers. There's even a section for ISPs which covers suggestions for creating an iron-clad Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) to keep the spammers away from your system and stop the trouble before it starts.

Clearly, whether you're a new user on the Internet or an administrator who remembers the good old spam free days of the past, I would highly recommend reading this book for the hard facts on spam and the anti-spam resources that it presents."
--Doug Muth, creator of

"If unwanted advertising is filling your e-mail and clogging up your favorite newsgroups, or if you're a system administrator plagued by spammers, you'll love this book."
--Elizabeth Lewis,

"It's a shame that such a book is needed, but the $19.95 for the softcover tome could be money well spent if it lessens your aggravation and wasting of time."
--Dr. Michael W. Ecker, Recreational & Educational Computing, Dec 1998

"an excellent treatment of the subject"
--Jason Levitt, Information Week, Oct 19, 1998

"Spam is not something we can eliminate simply by clicking on "delete." It poses a serious problem for the cyberspace community, one we should all recognize and work to combat. The best weapon to help in the fight I've found so far is a new book, 'Stopping Spam,' from O'Reilly & Associates ( Authors Alan Schwartz and Simson Garfinkel have done an excellent job of explaining how and why spam is a major headache. More important, they describe practical ways in which individuals and organizations can combat this insidious menace. All in all, this is a valuable book on an important subject. Well written, it includes technical material explained in such a way that you don't need a degree in computer science to get the message, but neither is it "Spam for Dummies." It will repay the thoughtful reader big dividends in useful information. I recommend it for anyone who wants to learn more about spam and Internet messaging in general."
--Ken Fermoyle

"The release of 'Stopping Spam' is a significant milestone in the long effort to have the problems of junk email and Usenet posts conclusively put to rest. Paul Vixie calls the authors of 'Stopping Spam' 'nothing short of arms merchants, supplying long-needed weapons to be used in the war against unsolicited bulk email.' I won't argue. Email and Usenet spam are serious, complex, difficult issues. Understanding them, and dealing with them effectively, requires a journey into the fundaments of the net, both technical and societal.
'Stopping Spam' accomplishes this task with a forthright clarity that a broad range of readers should find useful.

It is significant to note that the authors and publisher of 'Stopping Spam' recognize the dynamic nature of the spam beast; the authors, along with the book's editor, Debby Russell, are going to continue to privide updated information via the web. The URL for the web site is:

'Stopping Spam' covers the subject matter thoroughly. Beginning with 'What's Spam and What's the Problem', it goes into a short history of the phenomenon, concluding with the current state of affairs. It moves on to include tips on avoiding junk email and unwanted Usenet posts, how to deal with it once you've received it, how to complain, and how to take measures to get less of it in the future. Administrators and ISPs are treated to examples of program code and AUP language. The book closes with a chapter titled, 'Community Action', which discusses newsgroups, mailing lists, UDP/IDP, and legal doings. The Appendices list sources for tools and information and a 'Cyber Promotions Timeline'.

I personally found only one bone to pick of any significance. The book mentions 'hacker attacks' and 'anti-spam vigilantes' in several places, generally in a negative light. The authors fail to balance the negatively slanted information with sufficient mention of the countless honorable, honest good deeds done by so many the name of ending net abuse...

[This is a] truly minor complaint in the grander scheme, and should not detract anyone from recommending this book to others. The overall viewpoint of 'Stopping Spam' is unequivocally against those net abuses, and that is far more important than the minutiae of certain events....

'Stopping Spam' gets a thumbs up from this reviewer, and I recommend it to anyone interested in furthering their knowledge of the issues of email and Usenet spam."
--WD Baseley, posted on and