Press

“Credit Card Companies Could Stop Spam Now, But Will They?"
May 23, 2011  |  Paul Wagenseil, MSNBC.com

For more than a decade, computer software makers and security experts have tried to stop spam, and failed. It's now 90 percent of all email traffic. But some University of California researchers may have found the magic bullet : Simply cut off the money.

“Secret to Stopping Spam: Follow the Money"
May 23, 2011  |  Larry Greenemeier, Scientific American

Spam comprises upward of 80 percent of incoming e-mail, despite monumental efforts by help desks and security software companies to defeat it. The reason spam volumes continue to grow is that such efforts are often misplaced and fail to hit spammers where it hurts.

“Credit Processors Targeted in Fight Against Spam"
May 23, 2011  |  John Leyden, The Register

Computer scientists are advocating the targeting of card-processing middlemen as a way of clamping down on spam. Improving spam filters and takedown efforts against botnets, the main source of the vast majority of junk mail, have been among the main focus of spam fighters of late. Computer researchers at the University of California, San Diego and University of California, Berkeley are taking a slightly different tack in the fight against junk mail, targeting the small number of firms prepared to handle credit card transactions for spamvertised websites.

Anatomy of a Spam Viagra Purchase
May 20, 2011  |  David Talbot, MIT Technology Review

A sample of spam transactions finds most pass through just three banks, study finds.

U.S. Researchers Take on Spam Sites"
May 20, 2011  |  UPI.com

For three months, a team of computer scientists from two California universities deliberately set out to expose themselves to as much spam as possible, then systematically made purchases from the Web sites advertising drugs and herbal remedies in the messages, The New York Times reported Friday.

Study Sees Way to Win Spam Fight
May 20, 2011  |  John Markoff, The New York Times

For years, a team of computer scientists at two University of California campuses has been looking deeply into the nature of spam, the billions of unwanted e-mail messages generated by networks of zombie computers controlled by the rogue programs called botnets. They even coined a term, “spamalytics,” to describe their work.

"How People Broadcast Their Locations Without Meaning To"
April 22, 2011  |  Erica Naone, MIT Technology Review

People were up in arms this week about the privacy implications of news that the iPhone gathers location information and stores it in a file on the user’s computer. But experts say that smart-phone owners are unknowingly taking a much bigger risk with information about where they go all day.

Finding Spammers’ Vulnerabilities"
March 29, 2011  |  Marlene Cimons, NSF, U.S. News and World Report

Today’s hackers are a different breed from those of the past. In the old days, all they wanted to do was make mischief. Now all they want to do is make money. This means security experts no longer can depend solely on traditional defenses, such as blacklists and anti-virus software, since experienced attackers eventually find ways to get around them. Instead, cyber scientists are turning to an age-old system to help them develop a new approach.

How Much Can A Spammer Pocket A Day? You’d Be Surprised"
March 25, 2011  |  Eyder Peralta, NPR, The Two-Way

Researcher Chris Kanich wanted to answer the simple question, "How much could a spammer possibly make from their trade?" To find out, Kanich and his team overtook a botnet — or hive of computers that are used for spamming — and essentially created their own spam network.

"Equation: How Much Money Do Spammers Rake In?"
May 14, 2013  |  Julie Rehmeyer, Wired Magazine

After deleting the 10,000th Viagra offer from your inbox, you might wonder, does anyone actually make money off this crap? Chris Kanich and his colleagues at UC San Diego and the International Computer Science Institute wondered too—so they hijacked a botnet to find out.

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