A Mountie always gets his spam.

Eh? When Spence heard that an elusive spammer was checking into Ottawa hotels to use in-room high-speed Internet access to spew vile missives across the Web, he wondered how prevalent this behavior was in the United States.

"We think its pretty prevalent," said a spokesman for Mail-Filters. "When hotel chains are willing to plunk down real money for a solution, you know its a problem." The spokesman said the company created its SpamPlug product, which can inspect and reject suspicious outgoing mail, because many customers of its other services were hotels that wanted to avoid blacklisting due to lodgers abusing in-room Net access.

El Gato guessed correctly that just blocking outgoing Port 25 connections was not an answer. "Most business travelers hook up with their companys e-mail directly from the client," spoke the spokesman. "Mmm, when I was a lad," laughed the Lynx, "booking a hotel room and leaving after an hour or so was a whole different business."

A ring riled the Rumormongers reminiscence. The call was from a friend of the Furry One in—where else?—Washington, who said that thanks to the recent high-profile worm attacks, the word around Capitol Hill is that the Securities and Exchange Commission is considering an advisory recommending that companies include notice in the M&A portion of their SEC filings concerning potential network security vulnerabilities. Of course, Congress could never actually pass something like that, the crony continued, adding that what eventually may come out of Congress is a requirement that companies disclose the general results of an independent security audit, without revealing details on vulnerabilities.

Washington politics may be ripe for reality TV. The buzz in D.C. is that a new reality show thats a cross between "Real World" and "The War Room" is being shopped to the networks. Capitol Hill staffers and young employees of lobbying organizations and think tanks from Greenpeace to the Cato Institute would be tossed together in a house with cameras. This caucus of strange political bedfellows would undoubtedly also be offered via Webcast subscriptions. "So, why am I picturing Tim Russert making people do wacky backyard stunts, a la Big Brother," mused the Mouser.

Speaking of wacky stunts, another Tabby tattler claims that in an attempt to generate revenue, BMC Software has been dropping big discounts on the table in a heartbeat. Evidently, theres weakness in the management software market thats reportedly spurring discount offerings of 40 to 50 percent right out of the chute, even before negotiations begin. "Mmm, following salespeople as they try to close contracts should be the next reality show," cackled the Kitty. "Stand on your head, eat this big bug and ya seal the deal!"

Spencer F. Katt

Spencer F. Katt

Spencer F. Katt, the Whiskered Wonder, has been the mascot and tipster extraordinaire for eWEEK and its predecessor print publication PC Week since 1984. The Gadabout Gatto makes the rounds of...