American Family: Spamming a Long-Closed Email Address

American Family, a membership web site that offers “points” and prizes for participation, is sending bulk email to a long-closed email address. The email states that, “You recently registered with a network website to receive special online offers.” This is not true for any reasonable definition of “recently”. This email address has been closed since 2007. Either American Family accepts unverified subscriptions and somebody typoed an email address and domain, or American Family purchased a list. The ESP is Yesmail.

Although Yesmail is a recognized ESP, this email contains certain features that are normally present in snowshoe spam rather than mainsleaze spam. First, nowhere is the domain name of the company that is being advertised shown. This could be because this company’s domain and web site have an “unsatisfactory” reputation in the Web-O-Trust. Second, the URLs in the email all redirect through an affiliate program, which is the case for very little mainsleaze spam but most snowshoe spam.

However, the affiliate program in this case is run by Yesmail itself rather than a third party, and this email was sent from Yesmail’s own acknowledged IPs, so we are considering this mainsleaze spam and therefore blogging about it here.

Sending IP:

Spam Sample:

Actual Headers:

Received: from ( [])
        by <xxx> (Postfix) with ESMTP id <xxx>
        for <xxx>; Thu, 27 Oct 2011 10:xx:xx -0500 (CDT)
DKIM-Signature: <xxx>
DomainKey-Signature: <xxx>
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit
Message-ID: <xxx>
Content-Type: multipart/alternative; boundary="_----------=<xxx>"
MIME-Version: 1.0
X-Mailer: MIME::Lite <xxx>
Date: Thu, 27 Oct 2011 15:xx:xx UT
To: <xxx>
From: "American Family Mailings" <>
Subject: Find Halloween treats, savings, and good eats here
X-Campid: <xxx>
List-Unsubscribe: <mailto:unsubscribe-cid=<xxx>>
X-Pviq: <xxx>
Sender: "American Family Mailings" <>
X-Eid: <xxx>

Readable Email:

From: American Family Mailings <>
To: <spamtrap>
Subject: Find Halloween treats, savings, and good eats here

American Family<xxx>

Enter for your chance to win $50,000 cash!<xxx>

Wouldn’t life be easier with an extra $50,000? There’s only one way to find out. Plus, you can enter every day. Enter now!<xxx>

No thanks<xxx>


NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. LEGAL RESIDENTS OF THE 50 UNITED STATES (D.C.) AND PUERTO RICO 18 YEARS AND OLDER. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Sweepstakes ends 12/31/11. For Official Rules, alternate method of entry, prize descriptions, and odds, visit Sponsor: ePrize LLC, One ePrize Drive, Pleasant Ridge, MI 48069. Promoter: American Family, a division of SynapseConnect, Inc., 225 High Ridge Road, East Building, Stamford, CT 06905.

Only one (1) winner in total will be selected from among entries received through American Family presentations and all other Creative Presentations in the Grand Prize Drawing. See Official Rules for complete details.

Privacy Policy<xxx>

If you do not wish to receive emails from American Family, please click below:<xxx>

© 2011 American Family. 225 High Ridge Road, East Building. Stamford, CT 06905

infogrp Inc. 5711 South 86th Circle. Omaha, NE 68127

You recently registered with a network website to receive special online offers.

To no longer receive messages, please use the link below to remove your subscription.<xxx>

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