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BT acts on spammers and botnets

Antony Savvas

BT is implementing a fully-automated “spam buster” system to track down and tackle professional spammers and “botnet”-infected customers on the BT broadband network.

BT says around 80% of e-mails on the internet, equivalent to 6.5bn messages a day, are spam.

These unwanted e-mails are not only generated by professional spammers but also by botnets - where the PCs of unsuspecting customers are secretly infected with rogue software to form a robotic network that generates vast quantities of spam.

These compromised machines can be used in turn to attack other PCs and websites.

The new spam detection system used by BT – Content Forensics from StreamShield Networks – scans millions of e-mails a day, providing BT with detailed reports on the location and size of spam-related problems originating from the BT network.

Not only does the StreamShield Networks’ system save time and resources by automatically identifying spam problems, it can prevent valuable bandwidth being wasted on spam and virus infected traffic.

BT’s customer security team can then take action against professional spam operators, which could include terminating rogue accounts and adding offending IP addresses to industry-wide blacklists.

At the same time, BT said it will be able to focus more effort on contacting and helping customers rid their PCs of botnet infections – reducing the likelihood of e-mail traffic from BT networks being blocked by other providers and third-party e-mail systems.

“We’re turning the tables on professional spammers and cutting off this scourge of the internet at source”, said Stratis Scleparis, chief technical officer at BT Retail.


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