CipherTrust Keeps an Eye on URLs to Track Spammers

CipherTrust's TrustedSource Version 3.0 assigns a reputation to any IP address on the Internet.

As the larger security vendors begin rolling out first-generation reputation services in their anti-spam systems, CipherTrust Inc. this week plans to introduce Version 3.0 of its TrustedSource reputation service, which can now assign a reputation to any IP address on the Internet.

The system, an upgrade to the software on the companys IronMail appliances, works by uniting the boxes Spam Profiler with the reputation system.

Currently, each appliance builds its own local database of senders and then assigns them a score based on senders histories. After an appliance sees a number of messages from a given sender, it can then judge whether an incoming message is likely to be spam.

However, that process can take time. The new release takes advantage of company research that shows that 30 percent of a given enterprises e-mail senders rarely send e-mail. If they suddenly begin sending out mail, its likely that those machines have been compromised and turned into spam zombies.

As a result, TrustedSource 3.0 considers all unknown senders to be bad until they prove otherwise by earning positive scores on an appliances rating scale.

"There are not a lot of systems that can take this precise information and tie it to an IP address," said Matt Anthony, a spokesperson for CipherTrust.

Officials at CipherTrust, based in Atlanta, said their boxes scan some 50 million IP addresses and have developed a strong sense of which are regular spammers.

Part of that decision is based on how persistent a sender is and the way its scores cluster together on IronMails scale.

TrustedSource uses feedback from all the other IronMail boxes in deployment to help develop a reputation for unknown and known senders. Version 3.0 is available now as an upgrade for existing customers.


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