Microsoft Research

Microsoft Research: Spammers Act Just Like HIV Virus In Avoiding Filters

Security researchers often use language and metaphors from the natural world to describe problems in the virtual world. (Thus, our use of the terms “virus,” and “worm.”) Now it turns out that the links may not be so arbitrary, after Microsoft researchers discovered that tools they developed to detect spammers’ efforts to avoid anti-spam filters were also great at spotting mutations in the HIV virus.

Barely a week goes by that woeful statistics on the proliferation of cyber crime don’t make headlines in the trade and mainstream press. But a new study by Microsoft Research finds that many of those surveys are so rife with catastrophic statistical errors as to make their conclusions almost useless.

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