Talking tech since 2003

It is no secret that since the beginning of the use of E-Mail there has always been people with malicious intentions seeking to take advantage of users with no technical background by sending them messages containing malware and scams of all kinds. Recently, McAfee alerted users to an E-Mail that has been circulating posing as Facebook in order to have users install malware that is disguised as a document which supposedly contains their recently changed password. What I find surprising about this alert is not the level that spammers are willing to stoop down to, but how E-Mail scams still exist in 2010 when the infrastructure for E-Mail has been around for decades.

An average of 247 Billion E-Mail messages are sent daily, with a staggering 200 Billion being spam. There needs to be a serious upgrade to spam prevention. 1.4 Billion users worldwide have an E-Mail account, and protection of them is key. Google has made a tremendous effort with their filtering techniques implemented in Gmail to stop spam, but it is not enough. All service providers need to start integrating more sophisticated filtering technology to catch the phishing and scamming that is occurring everyday on the Internet, but it is not just the responsibility of the service provider.

Each message of spam that is sent out everyday comes from a source. Whether it is a single person at home sending messages to random strangers or a large cluster of servers programmed to do it, there is always a root. There have to be steps taking to stop this as well. Internet Service Providers and Datacenters need to start having better abuse departments to handle these types of inquires. In fact, recently I contacted AT&T regarding such a matter with a large log of timestamps and messages, and they blatantly turned the evidence down. The user continued doing it and still does.

This was just one isolated incident of an average user, but it demonstrates the lack of responsibility around the matter itself.  The Internet and E-Mail has been around for decades, yet we are still lagging behind in the effort to suppress the illegal activities that occur on it everyday. We cannot rely on the user to seek the knowledge, we have to stop it at the source and if we cannot do that we need to make even greater efforts to filter it.  Either way, this needs to be fixed.

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