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Re: Maths with Spam (Windows Zombies Reign with a Whopping 72%+)

__/ [ Ian Hilliard ] on Monday 16 October 2006 19:04 \__

> Roy Schestowitz wrote:
>> Why thus discussion about SPAM all out of the blue? Because hundreds of
>> megabytes of SPAM fill up my account more quickly than I can erase it
>> while benign messages that I send to people get intercepted. The E-mail
>> infrastrcuture has become flakier and less reliable than ever before. It
>> fell victim to Microsoft Windows. It's time to go Open Source. [end rant
>> /]
> Some time back, there was some discussion about how to handle spam. The
> idea was to have all spam marked as spam. Not marking spam as spam would be
> illegal. Not long after that the first stories about Windows boxes being
> turned into spam-bots came out.
> Microsoft's miserable security has become a tool being used by spammers
> now, but it is not the root problem. The root problem is that some people
> actually respond to the spam. The figure may be one in a Million, but it
> costs nothing to get an army of spambots to send out 100 Million
> spam-mails.
> What really needs to happen is for MTA's to filter out spam. This is
> admittedly a very difficult task as many spammers are good at disguising
> their work so that it doesn't get detected as spam. It is however the first
> and most important step. If the spam doesn't get to the fools, the fools
> won't fall for it, the spammers won't make money out of spamming and that
> will be the end of spam.
> Ian

I worry that it would only encourage the spammers to get greedier and use
even /more/ brute force. The matter of fact is that genuine messages are
already being lost due to the high probability that a given message is SPAM
(the the blacklists keep growing). Moreover, the spammers keep changing
tactics, which fools the best of filters (most latterly the so-called "geek
spam" which penetrates successfully).

Where would you set a threshold and what discriminant will give you a perfect
isolation? I am often on the verge of erasing messages that got through
filters as well. People's attention span gets shorter as the amount of
false-negatives grows. That aside, there will always remain an issue when
people are not in control of their possession (hardware/connection). Imagine
yourself cars being hijacked without the hijacker leaving a single trace...
labour is out there, readily available to use no matter the success rates
and reward. Look at click fraud for example...

Best wishes,


Roy S. Schestowitz      |    "I blame God for making me an atheist"
http://Schestowitz.com  |     GNU/Linux     ¦     PGP-Key: 0x74572E8E
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