Trusting spam reporters: A reporter-based reputation system for email filtering

TitleTrusting spam reporters: A reporter-based reputation system for email filtering
Publication TypeJournal Articles
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsZheleva E, Kolcz A, Getoor L
JournalACM Transactions on Information Systems (TOIS)
Pagination3:1–3:27 - 3:1–3:27
Date Published2008/12//
ISBN Number1046-8188
Keywordsreputation systems, Spam filtering, trust

Spam is a growing problem; it interferes with valid email and burdens both email users and service providers. In this work, we propose a reactive spam-filtering system based on reporter reputation for use in conjunction with existing spam-filtering techniques. The system has a trust-maintenance component for users, based on their spam-reporting behavior. The challenge that we consider is that of maintaining a reliable system, not vulnerable to malicious users, that will provide early spam-campaign detection to reduce the costs incurred by users and systems. We report on the utility of a reputation system for spam filtering that makes use of the feedback of trustworthy users. We evaluate our proposed framework, using actual complaint feedback from a large population of users, and validate its spam-filtering performance on a collection of real email traffic over several weeks. To test the broader implication of the system, we create a model of the behavior of malicious reporters, and we simulate the system under various assumptions using a synthetic dataset.