The Spam Diaries

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

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The new whack a mole

Recently brought to my attention: a blog post from November by Cameron and his Spammers vs Free Speech blog. His article, The new whack a mole, discusses how major data centers become spam cesspools.

In a nutshell, there are many large data centers with virtual hosting where you have ten thousand servers hosting a million web sites. Where you have multiple layers of resellers and IP allocations, the big hosters don't know who they're hosting and they don't care. There are countless virtual servers being run by people who are not competent to do so, or are too lazy to update the required security patches. Put this all together and you have an environment very conducive to spammers.

The biggest problem is that the large hosters refuse to take any proactive steps to reduce spam — after all, a spammer (or compromised server) is still a paying customer. They're willing — after a fashion — to take action against spamming sites after they've been informed of them, but by then the spammer has moved on to another compromised server anyway.

Anyway, it's an excellent essay (as is the rest of his blog). Joe-Bob sez check it out: The new whack a mole.



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