Snowshoe Spamming

What Does Snowshoe Spamming Mean?

Snowshoe spamming is a strategy in which spam is propagated over several domains and IP addresses to weaken reputation metrics and avoid filters. The increasing number of IP addresses makes recognizing and capturing spam difficult, which means that a certain amount of spam reaches their destination email inboxes. Specialized spam trapping organizations are often hard pressed to identify and trap snowshoe spamming via conventional spam filters.


The strategy of snowshoe spamming is similar to actual snowshoes that distribute the weight of an individual over a wide area to avoid sinking into the snow. Likewise, snowshoe spamming delivers its weight over a wide area to remain clear of filters.

Techopedia Explains Snowshoe Spamming

Snowshoe spam differs from solicited bulk mail and criminal spam. Snowshoe spammers use several fake business names, such as "doing business as" (DBA) and fake identities, and they regularly changes voicemail and postal drop boxes. In contrast, reputable mailers tend to make a good faith effort to develop brand reputation based on a genuine business address, identified domain and a small, static and easily identifiable selection of IPs. Snowshoe spammers often use anonymous and unidentified "whois" records. On the other hand, genuine senders are usually willing to present their legitimate identity.

Snowshoe spammers often use domain assortments, which are potentially associated with different providers and servers, to further propagate the spam load. Snowshoe spammers usually use anonymous domains, making hunting down the domain owner and reporting abuse virtually impossible. Specifically, in countries with anti-spam regulations, locating spammers, spyware and other detrimental activities are often difficult, mainly because the perpetrators know how to mask their trails.

To combat snowshoe spam, better and stronger legislation is required. Also, Internet service providers (ISP) should take action against spammers when they receive complaints about malicious activities. The anti-spam community must bring more attention to these issues and initiate coordinated monitoring to control snowshoe spamming.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…