The Spam Diaries

News and musings about the fight against spam.
 by Edward Falk

Thursday, May 04, 2006

World spam news

Finally, the Spam Diaries catches up with world spam news.

Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) calls for international cooperation among governments and businesses in the fight against spam.

... And the U.S. Federal Trade commission joins in! We may be at the threshold of true international cooperation in the fight against spam. reports that a third of UK companies violate the UK's anti-spam laws. reports that three quarters of all email sent to the Swedish parliament is spam. They're working on installing filters, but false positives are a problem, especially for those MPs dealing with health care issues, who often receive legitimate email about drugs from their constituents.

The Register has an interesting article on email authentication and how the idea is gaining momentum.

The Globe and Mail of Canada has an article about the projected next generation of spam, which will be sent from virus-infected computers and be personalized through the email address books on the infected computers. Spam from such zombies would look like legitimate mail from someone the recipient knows. See also VNUNet article for another of many articles on the subject.

IT Wire of Australia declares Beijing the spam-zombie capital of the world.

Sophos has released its latest spam rankings. Not surprisingly, the United States was the worst offender, but China was a very close second place. Third place went to S. Korea, with less than half the spam of China. Read on for more about China's efforts to combat its spam problem.

China seems to be taking the spam issue very seriously now — perhaps too seriously. The new anti-spam law requires that anybody operating an email server must have a license, and that service providers must keep copies of emails for two months. A frightening prospect where human rights are concerned, but I can't help wondering what would happen here in the U.S. if service providers were required to take a little responsibility for what comes out of their servers.

The National Telecommunications Commission of the Philippines has begun a crackdown on cellphone text spam.

The Register speculates that Google's servers have become saturated because of web spam, causing their index to fail to be updated in several weeks. I'm not too sure about this myself; I remember the last time FUD about the Google index was spread, it turned out to be an advertising campaign by a search engine optimization business.

And finally, catching up with today's news, TV NZ reports on strong criticism of New Zealand's anti-spam law. The criticism seems to come from the Retailers Association. Who would have guessed?


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