Spammer success story?


Check out this New York Times story on a successful spammer and how he’s trying to figure ways around the new Can Spam Act. Chilling. (Here’s a link to the congressional bill.)

As the laws change to prohibit email spamming and as the technologies and procedures adapt to confront them, I can better understand why this blog and many others are being challenged by the spammers. If blogs continue to increase in popularity, so too may the spamming–especially as spam marketers look for ways around the new email spam laws. Coordinated efforts–not simply the vigilance of a blogger checking their comments–are going to make the difference.

In a sense I’ve been surprised how civil and relatively non-commercial comments are on blogs. I get about five to ten spam posts every day or so. I’m sure a more popular blog would must be inundated with spam posts.

One solution is to turn off comments. In some ways this is not a bad idea. Another could be to run all comments through email–since email is being better protected legally and technologically by the ISPs. Maybe weblogs could be modified to only accept comments emailed to a Hotmail account, for instance, that leverages its spam detection technology. Actually, I’m not sure if this would work. Plus I doubt it would stop a spammer running overseas anyway.


  1. I don’t see comments on weblogs being a good target for spam.

    The general premise behind spam is that you can need to send a ton of it. Since e-mail facilates sending large volumes, you can freely send millions of messages. Even when the response rate is 1/10 of a percent, that’s still pretty good!

    Unless, and until, weblogs have automated systems for posting comments, I don’t think comment spam will ever be a problem.