Around a year ago, I had an idea. Well, I have a few, but this one gained some traction in that it actually produced working code. The code was (is) sloppy and unglamorous, but serves its purpose.

Having placed spamtrap addresses on my website for some years to add to the means of stopping spam from reaching my inbox, I wondered if there was more that I could do with a bait email address. Could the address itself encode information about the host which harvested it? It was obvious that it could, the question was whether I could be bothered to build it. I spent a few hours checking whether this was an old idea -- or at least, one which had been made public -- then did wrote the code.

While spammers are careful to conceal their identities when spamming, often they are less so when harvesting email addresses. Spam from botnet, harvest from home.

I'm doing this anonymously in case I upset any spammers to the point where they could be bothered to pay me a visit. However, I still want to get the data out, so I'll use this blog as a convenient place to do so.


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