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Microsoft Introduces Its Free Sender ID Technology

Microsoft has introduced its 'e-mail anti-spoofing technology' free for use by any organization. On October 23, 2006, Microsoft announced its 'Sender ID Framework specification' for e-mail authentication. Sender ID helps to stop spam, phishing scams, malware and other Internet exploits that take place through e-mail. It confirms the source of an e-mail message and helps customers to distinguish legitimate senders from spammers and online miscreants.

According to basic terms of OSP, Microsoft promises never to ask for anything from developers in lieu of their use of the technologies under it, so long as they themselves do not ask anything in return from Microsoft for probable patent violation.

Scammers and creators of phishing e-mail use e-mail spoofing to hide the actual origin of their messages. They make them appear from a different domain, more likely one known and trusted by the target recipient. Microsoft has found over 95 percent of exploits using this technique.

'Sender ID' resembles a caller ID system for e-mail that facilitates to fight spam and other cyber scams, most commonly phishing. Microsoft has been campaigning this technology over past years as a part solution to junk e-mail.

Microsoft's 'Sender ID technology' is installed in the 'mail server' of the recipient. It matches the IP addresses of all incoming mails with the list of IP addresses of the owner of the sending domain. Only when the two IP addresses match will the server deliver the message to the recipient.

There are other methods available apart from 'Sender ID' for e-mail authentication. These are 'open-source solutions' such as 'Sender Policy Framework' (SPF) and 'Certified Server Validation' (CSV). Although all perform similar tasks but Microsoft projects its own technology as better in catching spam and good enough to defeat phishing scams.

There is a fair possibility that 'Sender ID' will not be able to isolate all spam however popular it becomes. Many spammers are already successful in beating previous spam-blocking technologies such as heuristic filters. Blacklists updating for spammers' identities cannot keep pace with daily surge of new spam sending machines, including 'botnets'. In the battle of spammers versus anti-spammers, users often get trapped midway.

Related article: Microsoft Patches Live OneCare to Tackle Quarantined E-Mails

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