“Email spoofing” is a term that describes the sending of emails using a Reply To address that belongs to someone else. Spoofers are spammers that don’t want to be identified as who they are. They create a problem when they send emails to addresses that are no longer in use, or that have spam blockers turned on. The returned mail notices, sadly, go to the unfortunate real owner of the email address. It happened to me.
Two weeks ago, I was in the middle of packing for an interstate move and wrapping up business for a few weeks when, out of the blue, I received thousands — yes, thousands!! — of returned emails. The spammer/spoofer was hoping to lure people to a website that offered a particular pharmaceutical for men. I didn’t click on the link to the site — who knows what other tricks this person had — but it was clear from the subject line what the bait was.
If I received, over the course of a day and a half, nearly 5,000 returned emails, how many addresses did these emails go to? They were in multiple languages, went to email addresses in multiple countries. And I had to try to find my own real emails amidst that junk — talk about a needle in a haystack!
So what is the cure? There appear to be some technical remedies, but I didn’t know about them in time. Check out suggestions at IT Management’s website. My solution was to change my email address. When this is your business email address, it can be devastating.
Don’t think it couldn’t happen to you. My recommendation is, bring in a good IT person and set up whatever technical barriers are available before you get spoofed. Another suggestion, and I found this out, but too late to control it, make sure your email address never appears on your website.