Chain Email, Bacn, Hard, Soft Bounce And Email Munging

In this post, we will learn more about some terms in email list management such as chain email, bacn, hard bounce, soft bounce and email address munging.

Chain email: Chain email is a type of email spam where spammers use different types of techniques to encourage recipients to forward the message to as many recipients as possible. Some of these techniques includes:

a) Emotionally threatening the recipient that if they do not forward a particular email to x number of recipients then something bad will happen to them

b) Asking the recipients to forward the email to x number of recipients and they will get points or some incentives or any monetary gains.

c) Fake stories like each time when they forward the email to recipients, a reputed company or an organization will pay some amount for charity.

Bacn: Bacn is a type of email notification which a user has subscribed to, but sometimes it is not necessarily required by the user. For Example, when a user has created a social networking account then he receives many notification emails when friends post updates, write on their timeline, receives a private message, when someone has commented on a post, etc. Many times some of these notification messages are not really required by user. Bacn can be controlled by changing the email notification preferences for an account.

Hard bounce: Hard bounce is a term which is used for an email which is returned (bounced) to the sender because it was not accepted by the recipient’s mail server. A hard bounce can occur due to many reasons like if there is a typo in the recipient’s email address, if the domain of the recipient’s email address does not exist, or if the recipient’s email address is invalid.

Soft bounce: Soft bounce is a term which is used for an email which is returned (bounced) to the sender, however it was accepted by the recipient’s mail server. A soft bounce can occur if the recipient’s inbox is full.

Email address munging: Email address munging is a technique used by webmasters and bloggers to hide their email addresses from email harvesting tools. When an email address like is posted in a forum, blog or a site then the automated email harvesting software can easily recognize it and they will put it in their list. Webmasters disguise this email address as: contact at ThatsJournal dot com. This format can easily be read by the humans, however, the email harvesting tools will not recognize it as an email address. Another way of email address munging is done by using ASCII character codes. In this method, the email address is posted in the HTML as:

ASCII character code for email address
When this ASCII character code is translated your visitors will see the email address as However the spam bots will see this email address as:

ASCII character code for email address

Here, ASCII character code:

ASCII character code for @
is used for symbol @

and ASCII character code:

ASCII character code for .
is used for symbol . (dot).

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