I’ve been getting a log of image spam recently, both on my personal email and on my work email. The problem with image spam is that most spam filters tend to look for word patterns and? particular keywords, and when an email just consists of one image, well, the spam filter can’t really look into that.
There are now a few products on the market that combat image spam? and traditional spam filters are starting to catch up. For example, Borderware’s MXtreme includes an image analysis component that does more than just OCR and fingerprinting to figure out whether an email consists of a spam message or not. If you’re really interested in spam (well, you know what I mean), there’s a great article on Wikipedia which goes into detail about how spammers operate and outlines the rise of spam in today’s online world.
The interesting thing about this is how there’s a continual battle between spammers and anti-spam companies, quite similar to the battle between virus writers and virus scanners. Both parties continually leapfrog each other pushing technology and innovation foward in the pursuit of triumph over the other party. It’s interesting watching sectors develop and watching out for the real ace in this game: human ingenuity!