Some e-mail servers are (mis)configured so that anyone in the world can use them to send e-mail messages. This is called an open relay. (A normally configured server only lets authorized users send messages, e.g., only AT&T customers can use AT&T e-mail servers.)
Spammers use these to send mass amounts of e-mails because they are harder to trace, and since they are not a customer of the people who run the server, they can't be punished.
Some people who run servers don't realize that they are doing anything wrong, and if you politely inform them of this fact, they will close the relays. If they are using MS Exchange 5.5, point them here
and if they are using 6.0, point them here
for instructions on how to fix the problem.
last modified: 2002-05-20 23:16:20