Lashback tackles opt-in fraud
Last week Lashback posted a three part series on opt-in fraud.
One of the issues they commented on is that suppression lists are being passed around and some mailers are actually spamming them. This is something that used to be common, where spammers were harvesting email addresses from opt-out forms and then spamming the addresses or selling them to other mailers. This is why some ISPs and anti-spammers recommend recipients not unsubscribe from mail that they never subscribed to.
In the last few years there has been conflicting data on the prevalence of harvesting unsub or suppression lists. The FTC determined that there was no risk to recipients from unsubscribing. Lashback is now seeing some spam coming into their test addresses.
Overall, there are people who will continue to be suspicious of unsubscribing from mail they do not expect. This will drive up spam complaints and lower delivery. While responsible mailers are not the cause of the negative perception of email, they are competing with the spammers and scammers and sometimes recipients may not draw distinctions. This is why building relationships and trust over email marketing campaigns is such a critical part of delivery.