Protecting Email Reputation Locally and Globally

November 25, 2008
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As cases of fraud and criminal activity are known to increase during the holiday season, online criminals will find more creative ways to leverage email. Vigilance becomes the key to protecting the integrity of your email marketing program, both locally and internationally.   While attending international email law enforcement conferences in Germany and Greece over the past few months, LashBack […]

As cases of fraud and criminal activity are known to increase during the holiday season, online criminals will find more creative ways to leverage email. Vigilance becomes the key to protecting the integrity of your email marketing program, both locally and internationally.   While attending international email law enforcement conferences in Germany and Greece over the past few months, LashBack executives have gained insight into measures marketers can take globally to protect their reputation.

LashBack executives viewed presentations by key law enforcement officials and members of the anti-spam community, including one by Stuart Paton and Vincent Schonau from top messaging security firm Cloudmark titled Fundamental Principles and Outbound Spam Analysis Studies. To summarize, the presentation noted that webmail is currently the top outbound spam vector.  A small number of IPs are responsible for the majority of webmail spam, but webmail spammers use hundreds of user ID’s for spamming.  The primary threat is currently off-net IPs spamming through webmail of SMTP AUTH.  Because imposing IP based rate limits risks blocking legimitate users, Cloudmark recommends its managed outbound IP reputation service. To control spam sent through webmail, ESPs should limit the number of messages that an IP can send in a day and use volume thresholds to flag suspect sending patterns.

In addition to hearing Cloudmark’s presentation along with many others, we were fortunate enough to meet Hein Dries-Ziekenheiner, LL.M, CEO of VIGILO Consult, who has a thorough background in fighting fraud and criminal activities online.  As a former technical advisor to OPTA, the Netherlands’ enforcement agency, a trained lawyer and former lobbyist, he is an expert on the risks posed by the increase in illegal activity and the requirements this places on business strategy of email marketers.  VIGILO Consult provides consulting services in the area of ICT related public and regulatory affairs, compliance and strategic advice.

In the current uncertain economic situation, both VIGILO and LashBack feel it is important to stay ahead of the competition and online criminals by staying on top of reputation.  Monitoring reputation allows for safe expansion into new markets to diversify revenue.  VIGILO and LashBack are teaming up to provide LashBack clients with two special offers from VIGILO which provide anti-spam forensics to mitigate the effect of criminal activities on reputation.

The services VIGILO provides are an excellent extension to LashBack’s Brand Alert and Compliance services, as they allow clients to identify the appropriate response to any criminal activity impacting their business which requires extensive research to identify the source.  VIGILO can also work with law enforcement to assure the proper potential public penalties as well as assist with any private legal action a client may want to file. Whether you are thinking of expanding your business in the EU or have complex online criminal activity impacting your email marketing program, VIGILO can help you get started. Visit VIGILO’s special page for further information.

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