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North American Network Operators Group

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Re: Complaint of the week: Ebay abuse mail (slightly OT)

  • From: Michael.Dillon
  • Date: Mon Aug 04 08:41:39 2003

>we all knew that profitable large network owners would change the 
>compared to merely ebitda-positive large network owners, and here's an
>example of how "big company" cost management practices can go up against
>"reasonable and customary internet behaviour" and pretty much ignore it.

Having an abuse@ email address may be customary Internet behavior but it 
is no longer reasonable. The fact is that SMTP email has outlived its 
usefulness and needs to be replaced with something that provides a chain 
of authentication that certifies the sender's identity. Once email senders 
are no longer able to falsify their identity, then it will again be 
economically feasible for companies to accept abuse@ email from anyone.

Instead of working to prevent email relaying, we should be working to 
encourage it along with certification of the sender's identity. If we had 
a web of ISP mail servers that trust each other to certify the sender's 
identity, then people would be happy to accept any and all email relayed 
through that web.

The web of trusted email servers would use a new and improved mail 
transfer protocol (NIMTP) that would only be used to exchange email 
between trusted servers. Users could continue to use authenticated SMTP to 
initiate the sending of email, but nobody would accept any unauthenticated 
SMTP servers any more.

--Michael Dillon

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