The Spam Diaries

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

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Is the U.S. Army typo-squatting? Turns out no.

One of my favorite viral things on the internet is the "213 Things Skippy Is No Longer Allowed To Do In The U.S. Army" list. (My favorite: #87. If the thought of something makes me giggle for longer than 15 seconds, I am to assume that I am not allowed to do it.)

Actually, just read the list, then come back.

OK, you're back? Good. Anyway, as I was saying, the list became so popular that Specialist Schwarz wound up creating a domain name and a blog for it. The domain name is skippyslist.com.

Imagine my annoyance a few days ago when I typed "skippylist.com" (missing 's') and found myself redirected to what looked like an Army recruiting page. I was originally going to title this article "Is the Army typo-squatting?", but a little more research showed that the domain is registered to a domain squatter called "Navigation Catalyst Systems, Inc". Sometimes the page redirects to armedforce.org which seems to be in the business of selling services to military people, and sometimes it redirects to a generic link-spamming page.

This has been observed elsewhere as well — it was brought up in a radio interview a few days ago, as mentioned in Skippy's blog.

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