PermaLinkWhat Should Lotus Do For Anti-Spam?
07:08:27 PM

Over on the InsideLotus blog, Ted Stanton put up an informal poll about whether Lotus should integrate SpamGuru into Notes and Domino. Here's the answer that I posted:

No. There are so many technologies out there, and IBM can't do them all. Anti-spam is a rapidly moving field, an arms race really, and IBM's release schedules aren't conducive to keeping up. More than any specific cool technology (e.g. Bayesian), customers need a framework that will allow them to easily plug in new tools as quickly as spammers adpat to the current tools.

IBM's anti-spam efforts should be directed into two areas:

First, IBM should do more to develop technologies that keep spam from being received by the server in the first place. This is the bigger concern at the enterprise level, and there is a lot that IBM could do in that space but isn't yet. Check out Chris Linfoot's blog for lots of information about techniques he has been using for this.

Secondly, IBM should do more to make the existing rules features (in both the server and the client) more extensible. There are loads of vendors out there with anti-spam products, and also some free tools, but they don't integrate with what IBM already has built into Notes. IBM should support a way for an admin or end-user to go into the Rules UI and set up more arbitrary rules, including ones that execute code that is custom-built or installed with a 3rd party tool. That way, IBM would be encouraging individuals and vendors to create their own filter technologies -- whether Bayesian, neural net, etc.


Let me add that I strongly support the idea of IBM continuing to do cutting edge research on anti-spam technologies, and to participate as a leader in industry-wide initiatives -- especially with respect to authentication and identity technologies that will help reduce the amount of spam that reaches the server in the first place. I just think that it's more important that IBM make the existing rules engine extensible. If in the process of doing that, they create a way to integrate SpamGuru in with the rules engine, that would be the best of all worlds.

So, what do you think? They do take comments on InsideLotus, so tell them!

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