Anti-spam group, past its prime, closes doors

News by Ericka Chickowski

Organizers for the longtime spam-fighting organization Open Relay DataBase (ORDB) announced this week that they are calling it quits due to the growing irrelevance of the project in light of spammers' changing methodology.

Organizers for the longtime spam-fighting organization Open Relay DataBase (ORDB) announced this week that they are calling it quits due to the growing irrelevance of the project in light of spammers' changing methodology.

The anti-spam blacklisting group fought junk email for more than 5 1/2 years by tracking and listing open network relays that were being exploited by spammers to send their unsolicited mail. Administrators could use the blacklist of IP addresses to block mail from these spam conduits.

But as spammers have increasingly used botnets to power their operations instead of open relays, ORDB's efforts have become more fruitless.

"The general consensus within the team is that open relay RBLs are no longer the most effective way of preventing spam from entering your network as spammers have changed tactics in recent years, as have the anti-spam community," organizers said in a note on the ORDB site.

The group already shut down its mailing list and will remove the website on Dec. 31, the note said. Organizers encouraged users to remove ORDB checks from their mailers immediately and to use other anti-spam methods.

"We recommend a combination involving greylisting and content-based analysis," the note said.

Click here to email West Coast Bureau Chief Ericka Chickowski.

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