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Thu, Aug 14, 2008 9:39 pm

Error in Netopia Router Outbound Filter Set

I had configured a Netopia R5300 router to block outgoing connections to TCP port 25, i.e. to block outgoing email traffic, except from two designated email servers, yet other systems on the LAN were also able to connect to the SMTP port (port 25) on systems outside the LAN. After checking the outbound filters (firewall rules), I finally realized I had incorrectly specified for the subnet mask in rules rather than

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Thu, Aug 14, 2008 7:01 am

Opting Out of Credit Card Offers

It seems most weeks I receive several credit card offers in the mail. Since there are recycle bins in my community for paper, as well as cans and some types of plastic, I usually shred them and put the pieces in a box to be taken to the recycle bins with other items. But, since an offer I received yesterday had the following opt-out notice on the back of it, I decided it was time to opt out.

PRESCREEN & OPT-OUT NOTICE: This "prescreened" offer of credit is based on information in your credit report indicating that you meet certain criteria. This offer is not guaranteed if you do not meet our criteria. If you do not want to receive prescreened offers of credit from this or other companies, call toll free 1 (888) 567-8688; or write: Experian Consumer Opt Out, P.O. Box 919, Allen, TX 75013; Equifax Options, P.O. Box 740123, Atlanta, GA 30374-0123; TransUnion Opt Out Request, P.O. Box 505, Woodlyn, PA 19094-0505.

I called the opt-out number, 1-888-567-8688. I was informed it was the consumer credit reporting industry opt-in and opt-out number, which allows you to add or remove your name from "receiving firm offers of credit or insurance based on your credit report" with the following credit reporting services:


You can choose to add your name, i.e. opt-in, to such offers, remove your name for 5 years, or remove your name permanently. If you try to remove your name permanently, you will be informed that you have to complete a form you will be sent, so I chose to remove my name for 5 years.

You will be asked to confirm your phone number, name and address and provide your Social Security Number (SSN) and date of birth. The whole process is handled by an automated system and it only took me a couple of minutes to complete it.

When I completed the process, I was informed that my removal request would be completed within 5 business days, but that I might continue to receive offers for several months from companies to which my information had already been provided and that I might also receive offers from companies that had obtained my information by other means. Hopefully, though, I will see a substantial diminution of the daily deluge of junk mail we receive at my house.

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