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Spam map Googles junk mail proxies

Botnets ahoy

Reducing security risks from open source software

Mailinator - the service that offers free, disposable email addresses for use in web registrations - has created a "real-time" spam map. The system receives around a million junk mail messages a day. By resolving the IP addresses of proxies1 used to distribute this junk mail (and plugging this data into Google maps) the people behind the service have created a map to show where spam is coming from. This map is created from data that gets updated every three minutes.

Spam counts are rounded to the nearest hundred and what the map offers at present is just the locations and types of spam sent from the IP addresses currently sending the most spam to Mailinator. Facilities to look at snapshots of junk mail source across a sequence in time have yet to be introduced but the debut of a graphical description of spam generation - rather than just the usual, hard-to-comprehend statistics - is nonetheless welcome. ®

1 These proxies will most likely be compromised, zombie PCs used to distribute spam rather than the machines of spammers themselves.

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