Semalt Expert Warns Of Snowshoe Spam: What It Is And How To Avoid It

Snowshoe spammers spread different messages over multiple IP addresses, and the primary form of spam is the high volume of unsolicited emails that are sent from a single IP address. If you get blocked by the snowshoe spam filter, the chances are that you'd not taken the necessary measures.

Oliver King, a leading specialist from Semalt, provides here an overview of the snowshoe spam and tips on how to avoid it.

The history and background of Snowshoe:

Four months ago, at the postmaster desk of a mailbox provider, I was charged with evaluating the snowshoe spam. At that time, I created some automated filters and made adjustments in my email ID. I worked 24x7 and dug through the live data on domains and IPs to make sure that the system can process the current threats.

A spammer came along and tried something different. In 2009, the same spammer developed the snowshoe spam. Within seconds of blocking the IP or domain, more and more malicious activities were observed.

Like the snowshoe spreads the load of travelers across the broad area of snow, the snowshoe spam is a technique used by the hackers to spread spam across multiple domains and IPs. They want to dilute the reputation metrics and evade the filters (Spamhaus).

Why is Snowshoe an issue?

The traditional spam filters cannot fight snowshoe spam because they don't have enough space to handle requests from a single domain or IP. The snowshoe spam stays under the radar of the volume-based filters, but there is no way to resolve the problem.

To complicate the matter, it may not be possible to block the snowshoe without false positives. The chances are that the snowshoe spammers will 50 IPs in a /24, so you cannot prevent the entire domain or IP. Besides, the content looked legitimate, and I could not distinguish the bad stuff and the good stuff. Unfortunately, the spammers and hackers are always one step ahead. It looks like we would have to fight the snowshoe spam for a few years until a solution is found. In 2009, the anti-spam industry reacted to this spam. The same year, Spamhaus came forward and launched its CSS (Composite Snow-Shoe) list. Essential spam filters were updated, and experts looked for the ways to prevent the snowshoe spam. The snowshoe spam is irritating. But in most cases, it doesn't violate the CAN-SPAM Act in the United States. The spammers always include the P.O. Box to meet the postal address requirements and use different static IPs and domains.

How to avoid the Snowshoe spam?

As an email marketer, it's essential to fight the snowshoe spam. Some of the easiest ways are mentioned below.

1. You should use subdomains instead of the multiple domains.

2. You should not add the domain and IP to overcome the filtering and rate-limiting challenges. It's quite simple, but if you are not being filtered or blocked, the chances are that everything is fine. If you find yourself on Spamhaus CSS, then you should consider sending fewer domains and IPs. If you have doubts in your mind, you may consult an IT expert regarding the snowshoe spam.