Thought Paper: Spamware - Email Address Harvesting Tools and Anonymous Bulk Emailing Software
sponsored by MX Logic

Spam works because it is such a low-cost, high-reach endeavor. For very little investment and effort, spammers can reach millions of potential customers, and just 100 responses out of 10 million can turn them a profit. Recently, the Pew Internet & American Life Project reported that seven percent of Americans have purchased something through an unsolicited email. Because spamming can be so lucrative, spammers have grown wealthy and have become a market unto themselves. And, as with any new market there is often great opportunity. In fact, software writers in Eastern Europe, Russia, Southeast Asia, and elsewhere have developed tools that enable spammers to spam more effectively. We refer to these tools as "spamware."

Once spammers have prepared their junk email in such a way that it conveys their message and is set to bypass as many spam filters as possible, they need two things: a list of email addresses to send their junk mail to and a way to do it anonymously. To accomplish these goals they utilize two types of tools - one that enables them to collect or harvest email addresses and another that allows them to send their bulk email anonymously. This MX Logic Thought Paper will specifically review Email Address Harvesting Tools and Anonymous Bulk Emailing Software in order to provide basic knowledge email users can use to be better prepared in the fight against spam.
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