Queen's University

Anti-Spam Act has one good, yet unintended, side effect, says Queen's University expert

2014-06-30

Queen's University cybersecurity expert David Skillicorn is available to discuss Canada's new Anti-Spam Legislation, which comes into effect this week. 

"Canada's Anti-Spam Act, which comes into force this week, is a complete waste of money and effort," says Dr. Skillicorn. "However, it had one (unintended) good side-effect: legitimate businesses felt the need to ask all the people they sent marketing material to for permission to keep doing it. We've all been getting a flood of such emails for the last few weeks." 

These emails tend to contain a link to "Click here to remain on our mailing list," which Dr. Skillicorn notes has caused phishers to send out fake emails.

"Bad guys have been quick to leverage this flood with their own 'spear phishing' attacks using emails that look like they come from legitimate businesses, but for which clicking on the button leads to malware being downloaded," says Dr. Skillicorn. "It's really hard to tell when such an email is a fake because, in both cases, the click has no obvious effect."

To arrange an interview, please contact communication officer Rosie Hales at 613.533.6000 ext. 77513 or rosie.hales@queensu.ca.

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Last updated at 4:19 pm EDT, Thu July 31, 2014
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