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May 2004

Using email spam filtering techniques to get rid of spam

Lee Churchman is exhausted by spam--the constant drumming of unsolicited email that tumbles across his mail server. And he isn't the only one. One-third of the calls Churchman receives at his network consulting firm, System Wide Resources (SWR) in Ridgefield, Wash., are from customers wanting to do away with e-mails peddling cheap Viagra, easy weight-loss plans and hassle-free mortgages. "Spam is not a popular subject with me or my customers," he says. "We are all basically sick of it." In a new survey conducted by Information Security/ on the business implications of spam, 63 percent of respondents said the responsibility of paring bulk e-mail falls to senior executives and security managers, forcing them to devote time they don't have to solving this seemingly trivial problem. "I can't skip any of my other tasks that help to keep the agency running," says Norman McIntosh, the information systems manager at D.A. Blodgett Services for Children and Families, a family resource center in Grand Rapids, Mich. "That ...

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