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How to stop competitor from pretending to send your emails?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by TNCclubman, Jun 22, 2011.

  1. TNCclubman

    TNCclubman Well-Known Member

    I have an a-hole competitor that is pretending to send emails to people as if its coming from my server so that people think the emails are coming from me. He has the From in the newsletter as my company, the return address as our email, the from address as our email.

    I know theres software that aloows to do this, Ive emailed him to stop and he refuses. Is there a cease and desist letter template I can send him to see if that gets him to stop? I dont know what else to do without having to spend cash on a lawyer at this point.
  2. MGSteve

    MGSteve Well-Known Member

    Its one of the major holes in the email system, you can pretty much put anyone in the 'from' email address and send it.

    If he's sending it via your server, that's a whole different issue.
  3. Dark Matter

    Dark Matter Active Member

    You should check your cPanel server email settings are not configured to bounce (all email) aimed at "whatever@yourdomain.com" to a another email address entered, like your Hotmail one. Instead, turn that feature off in cPanel and create only a few forwarding domain emails to be used like "admin@domain.com", so then all other emails like (spammer@yourdomain.com) will not be bounced back your way. Instead they'll get blocked with error message to sender.

    That's if I think I'm right in what your talking about here, not sure?
  4. TNCclubman

    TNCclubman Well-Known Member

    Ya the emails arent coming from our server, its theres or their home computer im not sure. But if they go around spamming, then my legit emails are going to get blacklisted from hotmail/yahoo/gmail etc.
  5. Luke F

    Luke F Well-Known Member

    Add an SPF record on your domain
    Kier and jmurrayhead like this.
  6. User

    User Well-Known Member

    What's wrong with spending cash on a lawyer? C&D templates are worthless as they only manage to intimidate the clueless but not the callous.
    What to do about it depends on how much money your competitor has and what type of company it is (i.e. sole proprietor, LLC, etc.). Step 1 would be to preserve evidence. Step 2 is to go and pay ~$125 to get an initial consultation with a lawyer. You'll get a lot more useful and actionable advice out of that then you'll ever get on a forum.

    I really don't understand what the reluctance of going to a lawyer is all about. If you have a problem with your teeth you go to a dentist. You don't go to a forum for advice and then by a drill at a hardware store and try to fix the issue yourself. You currently have a legal problem, go and ask a legal professional.

    I am not a lawyer, but odds are that sending out correspondence pretending to be a company you are not is against some sort of law. It's probably also spam since the removal instructions are likely incorrect since they point to you whereas you didn't actually send the mail so can't possibly remove the recipient. Spam can get the person in trouble with their ISP, and their host, and maybe the law, but you won't know any of this for sure till you talk to a professional who specializes in electronic media and Internet.

    If it were me, and even if this were just a hobby, I wouldn't monkey around, I'd get a lawyer and start taking the harshest legal action possible so that the other guy knows to not **** with me.
  7. jmurrayhead

    jmurrayhead Well-Known Member

    Shamil and Darkimmortal like this.
  8. Brandon Sheley

    Brandon Sheley Well-Known Member

    I would do the same as suggested above.
    This isn't something you should have to deal with as a forum owner, I'd take care of it ASAP.
  9. TNCclubman

    TNCclubman Well-Known Member

    I have an SPF record for our server registered a few years ago. It does nothing as I get the emails from these guys still. I was under the impression it only proves me being legit, not that spammers are not legit. Helps my emails not end up in spam folders.
  10. maidos

    maidos Active Member

    curious mind to let usknow what spf record u added on zone file?
  11. SchmitzIT

    SchmitzIT Well-Known Member

    Hello baseball bat, meet cranium.

    In all seriousness, go for the lawyer, and be sure to send out a mail of your own, pointing people to the SPF record so they know how to identify the fake mails. Don't drop any names in there or anything, just something like "It has come to our attention that mails with forged headers are being sent out by a third party, and we want to inform you how to recognize our legit mails".
    Kim and Forsaken like this.
  12. Kier

    Kier XenForo Developer Staff Member

    Announce to your members that all future emails will have a corresponding thread posted by a designated user on your forum, and that emails will have a link at the bottom of the content that points to the thread.

    If a future email contains no link, or the link does not point to your website, the email is not legitimate.
    User and Mujahid Taban like this.
  13. Slavik

    Slavik XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    If your forums are big enough and make you enough money, go grab a lawyer, you are right, it is against the law under criminal impersonation.
  14. TheLaw

    TheLaw Well-Known Member

    Everything depends upon what you want to do. The first thing you probably should do is send him one of your own official cease and desist notices, which includes a complete description of what you are accusing him of doing. Send that via regular mail, not just email, and make sure it has some type of tracking to verify delivery.

    Next steps, not thinking lawsuit:
    What would happen if the state attorney general became aware of a fraudulent practice?
    How about a hosting company, which may choose to consult with its terms of service agreement?
    jmurrayhead likes this.

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