Send in your ideas. Deadline June 1, 2024


defending Internet e-mail from abuse by spammers

Unsolicited distribution of (nearly always commercial) e-mail (SPAM) is causing problems, due to unnecessary use of time and resources at the receiver side, and often  misuse of resources of third parties (MTA relays) by the sender. A number of people haven taken (mainly technical) actions to prevent SPAM, often in an uncoordinated fashion at the receiver side.

Paul Vixie (known from a.o. ISC), on his own personal initiative and responsibility, has compiled a black list of senders, by tracing the senders of SPAM using his deep technical Internet knowledge.

When contacting the sender and/or his ISP by telephone or e-mail, and advising with respect to counter-measures against SPAM does not have the desired results, the Internet addresses in question are added to a black list named Realtime Blackhole List (RBL). Then the Mail Abuse Protection System (MAPS) allows Internet users to use this RBL in various ways for blocking e-mail, or even possibly all network traffic originating from the non-cooperating SPAM'mer.

To ensure the continuity of the MAPS system, and to remove the personal legal risks for Paul Vixie, the non-profit organisation MAPS, LLC has been established in California, USA. NLnet Foundation attempted to support this initiative financially in 1998, but this did not succeed due to a number of fundamental contractual problems.

Nevertheless, NLnet Foundation considers the MAPS initiative of great importance for healthy operation of the Internet, and has therefore looked for another way to support MAPS. Per 1 January 1999, Stichting NLnet has acquired a lifetime membership from MAPS, LLC for US$ 25,000. A number of such sponsor memberships will allow MAPS, LLC to cover its initial costs until the service has become financially self-supporting.

Project MAPS

Navigate projects