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12 November 2009

Réseau ACTION TI is Quebec’s largest network of IT professionals. For the past seven years, once a month, this influential cluster has been drawing attention to the work of IT professionals who have distinguished themselves in the IT industry by selecting an individual as Quebec’s IT Personality. For October 2009, this recognition was given to David Poellhuber, president and CEO of ZEROSPAM Security. The selecting board gathers representatives from IT associations, partner organizations and the IT industry media. The weekly newspaper Les Affaires* is also a partner in this programme. The Quebec IT Personality of the Month award acknowledges Mr. Poellhuber’s professional endeavours and recognizes the value of his contribution to the IT sector through the development, improvement and marketing of a state-of-the-art, relevant IT solution in a market dominated by global giants.

“This is the kind of recognition that makes it all worthwhile, says David Poellhuber. I am very proud of the leadership position that the ZEROSPAM solution has acquired in Quebec. Our clients include large Crown corporations, governmental and paragovernmental bodies and globally recognized organizations. Our solution is a winning formula of simplicity and efficiency and it is constantly evolving with today’s business needs. I feel that we have now earned the trust of major stakeholders in the IT industry and that’s a very good feeling.”

* Read the interview with David Poellhuber on Réseau ACTION TI's website.

29 June 2009

SPF, or Sender Policy Framework, is a system that, when used properly, enables you to specify the authorized outgoing email gateways for a domain and thus protect it against spoofing. A growing number of organizations publish SPF records, a simple and free procedure that is well documented on www.openspf.org.
 
In this context, SPF is earning its stripes and millions of domains now publish SPF records – although they are not always valid. An SPF record that is not valid or up to date can do more harm than good. ZEROSPAM has indeed recently noticed that many domains had their email blocked because of invalid or multiple records. As more and more organizations publish SPF records, a growing number of email services is starting to validate them and could potentially block your messages if you have an invalid SPF record.

Therefore, it is in the best interest of domain names owners to make sure their SPF record has a valid syntax, is unique, and up to date. A free SPF validation tool is available on www.kitterman.com/spf/validate.html.

10 June 2008

Still hesitating about going SaaS? When you take the total cost of ownership into account, filtering appliances end up costing more than Managed Email filtering services!  According to the Software Information Industry Association, SaaS applications are the best use of your IT dollars. The complete report is available at http://www.siia.net/software/pubs/SAAS_TCO_WP.pdf.

02 April 2008

ZEROSPAM was represented by Louis Munro at the 2008 MIT Spamconference held March 27-28 in Cambridge Massachussetts. The conference is a chance for international experts and technicians dealing in research and operations on email security to discuss issues related to the field electronic communications security.

 

The ZEROSPAM team was especially interested by talks given by the Comcast team on ISP botfighting. Michael O'Reirdan (distinguished engineer) presented how Comcast implemented a new distributed and mutilayered filtering infrastructure similar in concept to ZEROSPAM's and made up of a series of network based tests, heuristics and contents analysis and anti-virus software. Tobias Eggendorfer also presented the state of his research on advanced filtering using simulated smtp tarpits. Useful discussions also centered around the use of the DNS system and MX records to fight non-rfc compliance by spammers.

 

ZEROSPAM wishes to thank the volunteers who made Spamconference possible.

07 March 2008


A Positive Meeting with Minister Raymond Bachand at the Salon des TIC

Mr. Raymond Bachand, Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade, stopped by the ZEROSPAM kiosk at the Salon des TIC on February 26. He spoke openly and warmly with David Poellhuber, ZEROSPAM’s President and Operating Manager, about the many advantages of managed email services for the public sector. The Salon des TIC 2008, an MDEIE initiative in collaboration with the Inter logiQ Network, offers Quebec companies working in the information technologies sector a rare chance to meet with potential buyers from the provincial government. This was the event’s third edition and it brought together 54 exhibitors and some 200 government purchasing agents.

The event is comprised of both a commercial exhibition and conferences. This year, those who wished to give conferences presented case studies and presentations were chosen according to their quality and relevance. ZEROSPAM was selected to present on the service activation for a large law firm. The conference highlighted the trust that was built between the two companies thanks to the clients’ cooperation and the quality of technical support provided by the ZEROSPAM team.

The connection between the Quebec ministries and organizations and Quebec information technology companies, which are extremely innovative, dynamic SMEs, is not nearly as strong as it should be. Which is why initiatives such as the Salon des TIC are essential to the development of new purchasing habits. ZEROSPAM would like to thank the excellent Salon des TIC 2008 team, because this event allowed the company to establish important connections with several ministries and organizations.

02 November 2007

Right now, nine out of ten emails circulating the Internet are spam. This information is based on daily statistics collected from millions of messages filtered by ZEROSPAM’s infrastructure. Recently, peak levels have even reached 95%. Other IT security stakeholders have confirmed this high level of spam.

This unfortunate situation has considerably compromised businesses’ Internet capacity and availability. On top of email, Internet links are also used for other critical functions, such as browsing, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), and online services.

Furthermore, new forms of spam have emerged and are consuming a much greater amount of bandwidth with PDF, Excel and MP3 attachments.

If a spam or phishing campaign is launched with a spoofed domain name, the problem can turn into a disaster. In such a scenario, the business’s spam-filtering solution will generate non-delivery notifications. These notifications will be sent by the millions to the firm’s gateway initiating what is called a "DSN Backscatter", flooding the spoofed domain, and thus seriously compromising its transmission capacity.

In the fight against spam, the only solution that eliminates threats before they reach the network perimeter is managed email filtering, which also frees up wasted Internet bandwidth.

01 August 2007

In addition to Tremblay, Savoie, Lapierre SENC and Desjardins Ducharme, the BCF law firm has called upon ZEROSPAM to provide security for its communications. We're very proud that another major law firm has placed their trust in us, says David Poellhuber, ZEROSPAM Founder and Operating Manager. As in all large law firms, security and confidentiality is of utmost importance to BCF. The security of ZEROSPAM's infrastructure, our strict code of ethics when it comes to protecting confidential information, our impeccable practices and our high standards have earned us an impeccable reputation for reliability. In turn, this has allowed us to gain the trust of even the most demanding business clients.

01 May 2007

The global anti-spam community has come to the same conclusion: genotype detection is the single most effective technology in the fight against image spam. All other techniques are ineffective. That's why ZEROSPAM decided to incorporate Cloudmark's message fingerprinting into its detection infrastructure.

Message fingerprints are profiles created from the unique form and characteristics of known spam. Message fingerprinting providers collect spam that has been reported to them by reputable volunteers worldwide. The providers use the spam to produce a message fingerprint, which is then incorporated into the filtering system to accurately detect messages that have a similar profile. Cloudmark is a world-renowned message fingerprinting provider.

Cloudmark provides ZEROSPAM with message fingerprints in real time, which are then incorporated into ZEROSPAM's filtering architecture. This new measure is extremely effective against image spam and gets rid of this problem for our clients at no additional cost to them, said David Poellhuber, ZEROSPAM Founder and Operating Manager.

30 January 2007

A study prepared for the Quebec Consumers' Bureau in November 2006 showed that 85% of all incoming email connections are spam. This level of spam traffic affects both private and public sector organizations. Soaring spam levels put undue pressure on email gateways, clogging Internet bandwidth and unnecessarily taxing the system's resources.

09 August 2006

ZEROSPAM, the Canadian managed email security service, and K3 Media, a dynamic e-marketing company, have just signed an agreement that will allow both companies to work together and benefit from their respective expertise.

Since May 11, ZEROSPAM has been filtering K3 Media's emails. What a relief! says Mathieu Bélanger, K3 Media President. A major distraction factor has now been eliminated.

In return, K3 Media optimized the search engine for ZEROSPAM's Web site. ZEROSPAM Founder David Poellhuber points out that K3 Media's work has already brought us new business. I really appreciate K3 Media's approach and expertise. Their excellent advice and ideas really made a difference.

Since it's inexpensive and easy to implement, this kind of partnership allows SMEs to achieve faster expansion and greater visibility.

07 August 2006

Because they were concerned about the amount of spam likely to flood employees' inboxes during the summer vacation period, the Quebec Chamber of Commerce called ZEROSPAM at the beginning of the summer in 2006. To meet this customer's specific needs, ZEROSPAM offered a special three-month agreement.

Canada Economic Development's Inter-chamber Committee acted as a facilitator for this project. After meeting the ZEROSPAM team at the Salon des TIC pour les marchés publics [government procurement ICT fair] in Quebec City, the Inter-chamber Committee put ZEROSPAM's technology to the test. E-business development consultant Luc Archambault then recommended the ZEROSPAM solution to the Quebec Chamber of Commerce to prevent spam from flooding inboxes over the summer period.

Once the service was activated, it had an immediate impact. The next day, everyone was talking about it, explained Pascale Navannec, e-business development consultant on the Inter-chamber Committee. People thought nobody was writing them because they received so few emails. Our colleagues are delighted.

The temporary arrangement allowed email users at the Quebec Chamber of Commerce to focus on their work. This arrangement became long-term in the fall, and the Chamber has been a ZEROSPAM subscriber ever since.

21 October 2005

ZEROSPAM founder David Poellhuber was interviewed by CBC on the topic of phishing. He describes the problem and the techniques used to prevent this type of attack. Listen to the interview in WAV format (1.4MB)

29 September 2005

Early one morning, the ZEROSPAM team detected and identified a phishing attempt targeting Royal Bank customers. Originating from a U.S. server, the email asked victims to enter their personal information on a fake Web site and then sent them to the real Royal Bank Web site. In all likelihood, the U.S. Web server that hosted the fake Web site was also hijacked. ZEROSPAM was able to determine that the phishing campaign was sent to at least 22,000 Canadian addresses.

ZEROSPAM's team immediately advised the bank's security team and the provider of the hijacked site, who took immediate action and deactivated the site following our request.

Phishing has become a major threat to Internet users and the ZEROSPAM filtering solution provides effective protection against this dangerous form of spam.

07 September 2005

On Sept 6, the ZEROSPAM security team identified and stopped a phishing attack targeting DESJARDINS.COM. This email campaign, which originated from a mail server in Brazil, also affected some of ZEROSPAM's subscribers.

The message lured Desjardin clients to enter personal information on a fake online banking site and then redirected them to the real Desjardins.com site. This attack was launched from a Web site located in Great Britain and carried out by a third party who had nothing to do with the attack. ZEROSPAM immediately contacted both Desjardins security officers and the owner of the hacked Web site, who was completely unaware of the situation. The site was immediately taken offline following our request.

Phishing attacks are taking on new proportions and the ZEROSPAM solution provides effective protection against this dangerous form of spam.

30 May 2005

For over 19 years, the Fédération de l'informatique du Québec [Quebec IT federation] has been holding the OCTAS competition, recognizing IT excellence in Quebec. This year, 137 projects were submitted in various categories.

At the OCTAS gala held at the Palais des congrès de Montréal on May 28, ZEROSPAM received the award for the best business solution in the Businesses with under 200 employees category. The entire ZEROSPAM team is thrilled with this award honouring our unique, high-performance technology, which was developed in Quebec after 18 months of R&D.

31 March 2005

ZEROSPAM's founder is interviewed by Evin Burle, technology reporter at CJAD; listen to the interview in MP3 format (12MB)

22 March 2005

The Montreal Gazette business section featured an article on David Poellhuber, President and Operating Manager of ZEROSPAM. The article was written by François Shalom, senior business writer and columnist, and is available upon request.

19 January 2005

After a conclusive trial period, the Société des alcools du Québec [Quebec liquor commission] has decided to subscribe to the ZEROSPAM email filtering service. The agreement protects SAQ users from the nuisance of spam while increasing Internet communications security. The SAQ has also subscribed to ZEROSPAM'S value-added remote monitoring service.

17 January 2005

After a free 30-day trial period that reduced spam by 98%, the Palais des congrès de Montréal [Montreal convention centre] has decided to entrust its spam management to ZEROSPAM.

12 December 2004

ZEROSPAM warns email users to watch out for the recent surge in phishing attacks. Phishers pretend to be a banking institution or an electronic payment company. They trick innocent victims by sending an email asking for confirmation of their banking or personal information. This information is then used to impersonate the victims and access their account in order to defraud them. ZEROSPAM has been implementing new measures since October 15 2004 to protect customers from phishing scams.

15 November 2004

70% of all incoming email directed through ZEROSPAM's filtering network is spam. ZEROSPAM customers have significantly more usable bandwidth, as this volume of spam is stopped before it reaches their servers.

08 September 2004

Ex-Microsoft developer Nigel Featherston successfully sued Charles Child and Linda Lightfoot, two notorious spammers operating under the names Universal Direct, Mega Direct and Ultra-Trimm. It is not known when or how the judgement will be enforced, as the defendants are nowhere to be found.

22 September 2003

Not only is spam on the rise, email users must now contend with an even greater threat: viruses that turn infected computers into zombies. The latest Sobig outbreak has demonstrated that a virus can now infect a victim's computer with malware. This program is remote-controlled by a hacker, who uses the victim's computer to send thousands of spam messages. The victim thus becomes an unwitting accomplice to spam attacks.

Viruses such as Sobig that attempt to install malware on your computer are blocked by ZEROSPAM.

19 September 2003

On September 18, thousands of email users were infected by the Sobig.F virus. However, ZEROSPAM's customers were completely unaware of this attack, as just 12 hours after the initial outbreak, ZEROSPAM implemented a new measure to specifically thwart this virus. In so doing, ZEROSPAM blocked hundred of emails that were infected with the Sobig.F virus. These viruses were identified and destroyed before they even reached ZEROSPAM'S customers' servers.

16 September 2003

Thanks to ZEROSPAM, AQIII members using the Blackberry are now protected from spam. The service rejects unsolicited emails and thus prevents users from paying traffic charges billed for spam. Blackberry and other wireless operators transmit your data - whatever the data may be - and charge you for this service. So, if you don't want to pay for spam that's being sent to you, watch out!

02 September 2003

The word spam has been known and used for quite a few years, and it's now officially accepted in the Merriam-Webster dictionary. It is defined as unsolicited usually commercial email sent to a large number of addresses.

26 August 2003

On August 26, the servers of Osirusoft.com, a well-known spammer blacklist provider, were completely shut down by a massive DOS attack. The attack appeared to be coming from many different sources. This was the first time a spam attack was planned and carried out against an anti-spam Web site. ZEROSPAM took immediate action by using alternate DNSBL sources.