Microsoft and Claria — Going Soft on Malware

It’s been a bad month for Microsoft’s efforts to promote their visions of trustworthiness and authentication in Internet commerce.
Just as the ground began to crumble beneath Microsoft’s “Sender ID” email authentication proposal, it was discovered that the Redmond, Wa.-based software giant was considering acquiring Claria, one of the world’s most notorious adware and spyware companies.
Let’s look first at the email authentication wars. As I’ve discussed previously, the battle over email authentication has been raging for several years. Among the many proposals being considered by the email industry and Internet standards community is Microsoft’s Sender ID and its closely related cousin, the “Sender Permitted From” or SPF standard.
Both SPF and Sender ID use text records entered into a domain’s DNS entry that define what IP addresses should be permitted to send email for that domain. These definitions embedded in the sender’s DNS records are then queried and parsed by the receiving server to determine whether to accept or reject a particular piece of email.
Microsoft and Claria — Going Soft on Malware

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