Filed in by Cameron Nouri | July 28, 2008 10:04 am
I’m Jamie de Guerre, the CTO of Cloudmark. We are one of Mailtrust’s new partners and our mission is to do everything possible to reduce the amount of spam you receive. I wanted to take a moment to explain how our technology works and let you know how Cloudmark and Mailtrust are working together to provide the best available spam protection in the market.
Mailtrust’s decision to move forward with new spam filtering technology was a proactive effort to secure customers against growing messaging abuse. The volume, speed and sophistication of today’s attack are unprecedented. And this is expected to continue—as spammers face more restrictive spam filters, they are developing never-before-seen methods to try to bypass them.
Cloudmark uses a completely different approach from traditional anti-spam solutions. The Cloudmark system is designed to automate the threat analysis and response by leveraging global threat reporting feedback from users and automated sources like honeypots, which are accounts set up to attract and trap spam. This is enabled by technology we call our Advanced Message Fingerprinting algorithms, which are able to create consistent identifiers for spam and phishing messages even after they mutate. This approach is also language, format, and encoding-agnostic so it works on spam containing images, double-byte characters, and URLs. Unlike anti-spam signatures or rules that are manually developed by staff in an operations center, fingerprints are automatically generated which enables faster response time to new threats.
We combine fingerprinting with global reporting and the concept of “trust”. Whether a fingerprint is considered “spammy” or legitimate is determined by the Cloudmark Global Threat Network, the largest live threat detection network in the world. It consists of millions of trusted reporters around the world, who report new instances of spam back to Cloudmark. Threat monitoring, therefore, comes not just from a department within a single company but collectively from a 24 x 7 worldwide network of email recipients. All feedback from this network is corroborated by a trust system before any action is taken on a message. To ensure accuracy cannot be compromised by spammers, this system tracks the reputation of each reporter and gives weight to feedback based on individual trust levels. Trust is earned over time by consistently reporting correct abuse feedback.
Cloudmark has recently begun receiving feedback from Mailtrust customers through the “Report Spam” button located in the Noteworthy Webmail interface. Reporting spam not only gives you power over the spammers but will help improve overall accuracy for the Mailtrust community of users. We have already started to receive some early feedback that this has helped improve filtering and as time goes on, this ongoing feedback will help Cloudmark to provide the best possible spam filtering for Mailtrust customers.
We always strive to be as aggressive as possible in the war against spam and security threats. We also welcome your feedback and comments. Please feel free to speak up, and I promise we’ll always act, listen and improve your security experience.
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