The Spam Diaries

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

Friday, June 02, 2006

Yahoo finds themselves on SpamCop list

Yahoo's outbound email servers have managed to put themselves onto the SpamCop list. The reason given by Spamcop is that Yahoo has sent mail to SpamCop spam traps in the last week.

Without a copy of the spam to look at, I can only speculate as to what happened. It's possible that there are really spammers operating from Yahoo. Another theory which crossed my desk is that Yahoo's "spam a change of address" feature triggered the listing, although I'm not too clear on how a change of address notice would find its way into an unlisted spam trap.

Update: I've had a chance to look at a couple of the spams in question. Definately real spam; one was a Nigerian 419 scam and another was for penis pills.

This only means that Yahoo! needs to be a bit more diligent about cleaning out their spammers. Given that gmail is also in and out of various DNSBLs from time to time, there's no surprise here. It's just one of the expected risks you take when you run a free email service.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kinda hard to detect a spammer's account on a free service before they send spam, don't you think? Especially in this era of spammers having full control over hundreds of thousands of zombie computers....

3:12 PM  
Blogger Spam Diaries said...

True, but there are still steps that can be taken: apply spam filters on outgoing email and raise flags if too many posts from the same account get high scores.

Another options: outgoing email throttling. Real people do not send more than about 20-30 emails per hour.

3:27 PM  

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