Browse Prior Art Database

Method to automatically update a spam filter database by the end users

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000126254D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Jul-11
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jul-11
Document File: 2 page(s) / 29K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

The main idea is to simplify and generalize updates to the spam filters. All the end user has to do is to reply to the unwanted email with a modified Subject: line to cause spam filters to blacklist the sender of the email and trigger the filter learning if available.

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Method to automatically update a spam filter database by the end users

This article solves a problem of automatic updating of spam filters by the end user. A similar solution would be Yahoo's* "mark message as spam" feature, when the user selects the message and then presses the "spam" button to supposedly let the system learn that this message was a spam. The drawback of the yahoo solution would be dependence on the Yahoo mail service and its interface. Our solution is generic to the end user and most UNIX** based email servers can employ this technique,

Process: - the end user gets an unwanted email message in his/her mailbox with a subject line "Cheap software for you"; - the end user hits the reply button on his/her email client and includes a string "ADV: Cheap software for you" in the subject line; - the end user hits the send button on his/her email client; - the mail server receives the email from our end user, examines the subject line, detects the "ADV:" string, saves the message to a temporary folder; - the spam learning program periodically checks the temporary folder, extracts the senders From: addresses and adds them to the blacklist; - the spam learning program optionally learns from the original messages (included with our end user replies), in a manner similar to spamassassin's sa-learn program (see http://www.spamassassin.org); - the saved spam message is sent to the bit bucket.

Note: "ADV:" was used as an example, required by law in some states...