Fun with spammers

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Somehow my email address has ended up on a list used by low-end tech bodyshops. The type of recruiters that exist only to place warm H-1Bs in short-term Oracle DBA contracts for $10 an hour. The list is sold, given, or rented to a number of bottom-feeding headhunters.

I have no idea how I got on this spam list. I’ve never heard of any of these bodyshops and certainly didn’t ask to receive mail from them, yet each day I get email from various bodyshops advertising the people they have available or their latest "HOT REQ." Invariably the spam has an all caps subject, is poorly worded, and is sent by a contact management package called cBizOne. CBizOne is a legitimate sales and contact management program aimed at IT shops, but these headhunters are abusing it as a spam system.

The only good thing about these emails is that most of the bodyshops sending them out are located in California. Since I’m also in California, I can take advantage of California spam laws that entitle the offended party (me) to $50 per message or actual damages, up to $25,000 per day.

So I invoice them. Usually they ignore the invoices and continue spamming me. Once I remind them of the several thousand dollars that they owe, the spamming usually stops. No one has paid yet, but once the accounts have been past due long enough to indicate they have no intention of paying, my next step is to file a suit in small claims court for the outstanding balances.

Last week another bodyshop must have bought the spam list, because I received a new spam from a shop I didn’t recognize. Here’s the email exchange that followed.

From: Yogesh Virmani [mailto:yogesh@enterprisesolutioninc.com]
Sent: Friday, December 06, 2002 4:27 PM
To: Yogesh Virmani
Subject: * REQ. - LEAD FUNCTIONAL CONSULTANT

Dear partner,

These are the requirements currently open.

Lead FUNCTIONAL CONSULTANT

Searching for a senior fuctional consultant with the
following experience:

blah blah blah CRM blah blah send resume blah blah

I will contact you, if I need more information.

Regards,

Yogesh Virmani
Enterprise Solutions, Inc.
408-727-3033

Normally my replies to these people have been very polite and business-like. I’ll explain that I don’t want to get their mail and it would be nice if they’d stop wasting my time. If they’re in California, I’ll explain California spam laws to them. But that wasn’t working, so I thought I’d try a different approach—dry humor and sarcasm.

From: Adam Kalsey
Sent: Saturday, December 07, 2002 7:55 PM
To: 'yogesh@enterprisesolutioninc.com'
Subject: RE: * REQ. - LEAD FUNCTIONAL CONSULTANT

> Dear partner,

Perhaps you don’t understand the term "Partner." According to the dictionary, it means...
(a) A husband or a wife. (b) Either one of a couple who dance together. (c) One who shares as a member of a partnership in the management, or in the gains and losses, of a business.

We aren’t married and aren’t dancing, and I’ve never heard of you, so we apparently are not in business together.

I’m not sure where you got my email address from or why you think I would care about what consultants you are looking for, but I have no interest in receiving your spam.

Do not send further unsolicited commercial email to any address in the kalsey.com domain. Remove all kalsey.com addresses from any mailing lists owned or used by you, your companies, or it’s affiliates. California law provides for penalties of the greater of $50 per email or actual damages, up to $25,000 per day. (California Business & Professions Code Section 17538.4) Further spam will be billed at our standard consulting rate of $xx per hour, with a one hour minimum per message.

Then I promptly forgot all about Mr. Virmani. Until yesterday, when he sent me another piece of spam.

From: Yogesh Virmani [mailto:yogesh@enterprisesolutioninc.com]
Sent: Tuesday, December 17, 2002 1:48 PM
To: Yogesh Virmani
Subject: * AVAILABLE - Sr. SIEBEL CONSULTANT, CONFIGURATOR

Dear Partners,

We have a very senior SIEBEL CONSULTANT AVAILABLE

...

I replied with more wit and sarcasm.

From: Adam Kalsey
Sent: Tuesday, December 17, 2002 2:27 PM
To: 'yogesh@enterprisesolutioninc.com'
Subject: RE: AVAILABLE - Sr. SIEBEL CONSULTANT, CONFIGURATOR

Thanks for your message. As outlined in my email of December 7, 2002, our policy on spam is to charge $xx per message as proscribed by California law. We offer can you the convenience of bi-weekly or monthly billing. I’ve set you up for bi-weekly billing. If you would prefer to be invoiced monthly, please let me know and I’ll adjust your account.

Attached is your first invoice. Please note that it is due upon receipt. Invoices not paid within 10 days of the invoice date are considered past due and will be assessed a 10% late fee. If you would like a complete schedule of our late fees, please ask.

Also, I’ve noticed some problems with your message that could keep it from being received and viewed by the intended recipients. We offer consulting services to improve your email marketing. Let me know if you would like more information.

pol
January 23, 2003 4:00 PM

waaaw, love it ! don't you usually receive MORE spam when you reply on a mail ? So they know the address exists, and this gets confirmed in their lousy databases, adding you to more and more spamlistings :-(((

Chris Wade
April 10, 2003 3:43 PM

Awesome! I would like to know if anyone has ever paid? Also- Have you won anything in court?

Spam Hater
April 11, 2003 8:25 AM

Hi Kalsey, Good to know that you have taken initiative to stop the hacking. But I would also recommend you to look at the Root for this case, which is the guy who is selling the list: His Name is ********. email: ******@********.

Adam Kalsey
April 11, 2003 8:30 AM

If you are going to leave a public comment with somone else's personal information, be enough of a man to leave your real name and email address. Otherwise, I'll just remove the information as I did with the previous comment.

phyllus
August 9, 2003 7:54 AM

Adam, You can always go to http://vww.spamcop.com/ to find out how to report SPAM and then send the email from Yogehs Virmani to them and then they will look at the email and report. There website may get black listed. Good luck

phyllus
August 9, 2003 7:54 AM

Adam, You can always go to http://vww.spamcop.com/ to find out how to report SPAM and then send the email from Yogesh Virmani to them and then they will look at the email and report. There website may get black listed. Good luck

Lorraine
January 5, 2006 12:01 PM

Hi Adam, Nice Blog. In case you are looking for work, feel free to contact me. I am a local tecnical recruiter who is always looking for bright and talented people. I too get those awful mispelled REQ emails, but I can sort of understand why. How you got on a list is a bit of a mystery. I do know that it is a good idea to not EVER have your actual email address anywhere on your website. Between crawlers, spiders etc, having a full email address avail now is just asking to be spammed!

Mark
August 24, 2006 4:24 AM

Hi Adam, Can you let me know what happened next with Enterprise Solution? Did you sue them? Cheers.

Nicholas
February 25, 2009 1:17 AM

These guys got me a contract in Santa Barbara with Taser, a contract which I held my nose and took, because I need the money. Now Taser won't pay me, and Enterprise won't back me up. Here is the letter I just sent out: Yogesh, Call me immediately at (707) 468-5404 x116. I am considering retaining a lawyer to ensure that I get paid, and also to ensure that this company not readvertise this position when they are not paying me for the contract work that I have performed for them. I worked forty hours between 2/13 and 2/20 for Taser. After sending them a revised 60 page document on Friday, 2/20, I also sent them my timesheet, to get it signed, and subsequently never heard back from them. I spoke to Pratik Sharda on Monday 2/22 about this, and he followed up and discovered that they are not interested in continuing my contract. However, I have worked 40 hours between 2/13 and 2/20, and revised the document I was working on, adding about 33% more content during those 40 hours. They have not signed my timesheet, or even signed off on my expense report for the interview, which I have also sent to them. Pratik told me would follow up, but I am not hearing anything and I am afraid that I will not get paid for my last 40 weeks of work. I see that Enterprise Solutions is already re-advertising this position (see below), but I think it is important to make sure that your current contractor (myself) gets paid before you try to fill this position with another contractor. I am wondering whether I should retain legal counsel. I would like my timesheet signed and a check for the 40 hours between 2/13 and 2/20 issued to me. I want to be paid for my forty hours of work before Enterprise places another contractor with Taser who they will most likely also not pay. Please call me ASAP at (707) 468-5404 x116 Nicholas Pierotti --------------- Here is it what Pratik said to me in his last email: "I tried reaching them, I have left voicemail and will follow up in a bit. I am sure we will take care of this issue soon. Pratik" -----Original Message----- From: N. J. Pierotti [mailto:eurydice@cruzio.com] Sent: Tuesday, February 24, 2009 3:02 PM To: Pat Sharda Cc: N. J. Pierotti Subject: Important Update on Timesheet and Expenses Importance: High I just spoke to Diana McNeill at Taser. She is the front desk person there. She said that she would get the timesheet and the expense report to Chris and Jason, but she said she couldn't guarantee that they would sign off on either of them. I am owed for forty hours of back pay at this time, plus the expenses. I think you will need to follow up with them more aggressively so that we get what we are owed. They just can't be in meetings all the time. Nick ------------------- Here are the re-advertised positions as listed on Dice: 1-Technical Writer -PRD & FSD -CTH 2-QA with MPEG with C++ Developer Enterprise Solutions Santa Barbara, CA Feb-24 Technical Writer with PRD & FSD Experience Enterprise Solutions Santa barbara, CA Feb-24 Technical Writer - with PRD & FSD - C2H - Local only from south CA Enterprise Solutions SANTA BARBARA, CA Feb-24

Nicholas
February 25, 2009 1:21 AM

These guys got me a contract in Santa Barbara with Taser, a contract which I held my nose and took, because I need the money. Now Taser won't pay me, and Enterprise won't back me up. Here is the letter I just sent out: Yogesh, Call me immediately at (707) 468-5404 x116, or at eurydice@cruzio.com. I am considering retaining a lawyer to ensure that I get paid, and also to ensure that this company not readvertise this position when they are not paying me for the contract work that I have performed for them. I worked forty hours between 2/13 and 2/20 for Taser. After sending them a revised 60 page document on Friday, 2/20, I also sent them my timesheet, to get it signed, and subsequently never heard back from them. I spoke to Pratik Sharda on Monday 2/22 about this, and he followed up and discovered that they are not interested in continuing my contract. However, I have worked 40 hours between 2/13 and 2/20, and revised the document I was working on, adding about 33% more content during those 40 hours. They have not signed my timesheet, or even signed off on my expense report for the interview, which I have also sent to them. Pratik told me would follow up, but I am not hearing anything and I am afraid that I will not get paid for my last 40 weeks of work. I see that Enterprise Solutions is already re-advertising this position (see below), but I think it is important to make sure that your current contractor (myself) gets paid before you try to fill this position with another contractor. I am wondering whether I should retain legal counsel. I would like my timesheet signed and a check for the 40 hours between 2/13 and 2/20 issued to me. I want to be paid for my forty hours of work before Enterprise places another contractor with Taser who they will most likely also not pay. Please call me ASAP at (707) 468-5404 x116 Nicholas Pierotti --------------- Here is it what Pratik said to me in his last email: "I tried reaching them, I have left voicemail and will follow up in a bit. I am sure we will take care of this issue soon. Pratik" -----Original Message----- From: N. J. Pierotti [mailto:eurydice@cruzio.com] Sent: Tuesday, February 24, 2009 3:02 PM To: Pat Sharda Cc: N. J. Pierotti Subject: Important Update on Timesheet and Expenses Importance: High I just spoke to Diana McNeill at Taser. She is the front desk person there. She said that she would get the timesheet and the expense report to Chris and Jason, but she said she couldn't guarantee that they would sign off on either of them. I am owed for forty hours of back pay at this time, plus the expenses. I think you will need to follow up with them more aggressively so that we get what we are owed. They just can't be in meetings all the time. Nick ------------------- Here are the re-advertised positions as listed on Dice: 1-Technical Writer -PRD & FSD -CTH 2-QA with MPEG with C++ Developer Enterprise Solutions Santa Barbara, CA Feb-24 Technical Writer with PRD & FSD Experience Enterprise Solutions Santa barbara, CA Feb-24 Technical Writer - with PRD & FSD - C2H - Local only from south CA Enterprise Solutions SANTA BARBARA, CA Feb-24

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