A new outbreak of ASCII art spam has graced the ‘net; most recently blogged about on Mashable, it has reappeared of late, now flogging – what else – sexual enhancement meds. For those of you unfamiliar with ASCII art, it is a historic (if you’re counting history in Internet time) way of drawing a picture using characters.
An example of the latest ASCII art spam is below:
It looks like the spammers had a bit of trouble with their algorithm, since the web site and prices are pretty hard to read.
If you look closely at the components of each of the “letters” above, you will see that it is composed of random numbers, designed to fool traditional email content-filtering mechanisms. Commtouch blocks these types of messages through a combination of RPD (Recurrent Pattern Detection) technology, as well as Zombie detection, which enables Commtouch filters to identify botnet senders through an analysis of the sender’s reputation.