LinuxMagic Profiles Mail Servers
After 9/11 the ACLU made a big deal to stop the profiling of air travelers, forcing the government to rely on more systematic methods including random detailed searches. However, mail server profiling has not been outlawed and according to the folks at LinuxMagic, of Surrey BC, it works really well at protecting the million accounts their clients operate.
A few years after the company's 1997 founding, the engineering team began to focus on their deep understanding of the link between a users' email experience and customer churn. Focused on the ISP space, many of which host email servers or domains for small businesses, LinuxMagic developed a software portfolio around implementing the best practices in MTA operation and around open source technology, bundling both into a software product and support infrastructure that protects the ISPs mail server from the burden of storing spam.
Speaking with Michael Peddemors, LinuxMagic CEO, Brockmann & Company discussed the power of their solution. Michael argues that it is very important for ISPs in particular to stop accepting email from sloppy servers and spambots. For this class of service provider, Michael argues that significant quantities of spam can be denied delivery by using mailserver profiling.
Arguing that there is a finite number of usable IP addresses and that simple SMTP techniques can significantly reduce the pain among ISPs:
- Stop accepting mail for unknown users
- Reverse DNS lookup (does this sender IP address have the correct domain record for the domain they purport to be sending email from? If no, deny).
- IP reputation through extensive integration with black list services which identifies the IP address of known spammers (and in the case of spamrats.com even known emarketing agencies)
- Rate limiters to reduce the quantity of mail sent from any client account or limiting the rate of messages sent by any client – knowing that spammers might open an account and then blast out 10,000 messages, these features limit first 30 day sends to a more realistic number consistent with acceptable use policy of 100 messages/day for the first 30 days
Like each of the other companies and solutions discussed in this blog, LinuxMagic offers a compelling case for how ISPs can greatly reduce the burden of storage, filter processing and poor user experience through the adoption of best practices in mail server operation. Codifying these best practices as a product is an effective method for managing changes, reducing the operational burden of ISP engineers and assuring consistent deployments across the supported customer community.
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