What is spam?
Spam on the XRP Ledger is any unwanted or unsolicited transaction that gets sent out in bulk.
About the XRP Ledger
The XRP Ledger is a decentralized blockchain that anyone can access and use. Features like the base reserve (wallet reserves) and owner reserves help to limit spam since people need to meet these reserve requirements in order to transaction on the network.
One of the best features of the XRPL is its low transaction fees. Often as low as .000012 XRP, sending transactions is extremely inexpensive which makes the XRPL a great way to move assets around the globe.
Another great feature is the "Memo" field. The intention of this field is to allow the transaction sender to include a short note in the transaction to help identify it for accounting purposes.
Unfortunately, some unscrupulous people have discovered these two features and combined them to distribute spam across the network.
How it works
As of late the number of spam on the XRP Ledger has increased. The goal of the spammers is to get your assets and they stop at nothing to get your XRP.
They have figured out that they can combine the low fees of the XRPL with the Memo field to send low value transactions to a large number of accounts.
By doing this, they can get their "message" out to thousands of people at a very low cost.
Why do token issuers send spam?
It is simply a marketing ploy to get you to participate in their scam project.
While it is up to you to decide, we feel that any project that distributes mass transactions in order to market their token is not worthy of our time, energy and shouldn't be allowed to use Xumm and take advantage of the servers and network capabilities we provide to the XRP Ledger network.
What can I do about spam on the XRPL?
Some people who receive spam, take it upon themselves to contact the scam token issuers and explain (often in very strong language) spamming a public network is... unwanted and undesirable.
Others take to social media to condemn the token issuers and warn others not to participate.
Most people simply ignore the transactions though and we advise you to do this as well.
Can I delete the transaction from Xumm?
Nobody can delete a transaction from the XRP Ledger or from Xumm. If it exists on the XRPL, Xumm will display it.
Do these spam transactions cost me XRP?
No. It costs the sender to send them. The sender pays the XRPL transaction fees, not you.
Should I return the XRP to them?
That is completely up to you. These spammers want to get some sort of reply from you. That way they know you are reading their messages. Once you reply, they will most likely send you targeted messages and perhaps even try to convince you to purchase their token or get you to send them your private keys.
If I return it will I be charged a transaction fee?
Yes. The XRPL automatically charges transaction fees in order to process transactions. It will cost you XRP to send the funds back to them.
Can they access my account in any way?
No. The only way someone can access your XRPL account is if you give them your account secret. (Secret Numbers/ Family Seed / Mnemonic) See this article for more information:
I clicked on the memo in a transaction. Am I in any danger??
No. The only way someone can access your XRPL account is if they get access to your account secret. (Secret Numbers/ Family Seed / Mnemonic) See this article for more information:
How did they get my r-address? I've been very careful who I've interacted with in the XRP community...
A token issuer does not need to get r-addresses by scraping the XRPL, they can simply get them straight from the ledger and filter on balance and/or tokens held. In fact, anyone can do this. (Remember, the XRPL is an open, decentralized and permissionless blockchain..) There's no preventing this from happening so all addresses can potentially be spammed.
How does Xumm handle spam?
Xumm is constantly searching the XRP Ledger for accounts which send multiple spam transactions. When we find them, the account is immediately flagged, the memo field is suppressed and a notification is added to the flagged transactions.
As well, for our Xumm Pro users, the push notifications are suppressed so you are not notified when the spam transactions arrive in your account.
But you're Xumm, you must be working on some way to fix this...
You are 100% correct! Spam is an abuse of the XRPL and is not acceptable so here is a sneak peek of what we are working on...
- We are considering a proposal to amend the XRPL. If transactions with long memos were subjected to escalating fees, it would make it more far more expensive for people to spam the network. It could still be done, but the amendment would make it prohibitively expensive.
- We have been developing a project that we call Hooks. (Hooks are basically smart contracts on the XRPL.) If Hooks makes it to the XRPL (via an amendment), people will be able to install a "hook" that would filter out spam transactions. Think of it like a firewall that woud block "shady" or questionable transactions.
We understand that you might have additional questions regarding this topic so you are welcome to contact us any time via the Xumm Support xApp in Xumm or you can simply scan this QR code with Xumm and be directed there automatically.