Skyrocketing junk e-mail threatens to overload servers with cheer this Christmas. Desperate IT managers are reported to be trying to prevent servers from crashing and Internet links clogging causing potential disaster to business-critical E-mail.
According to David Jones, technical director of Internet and e-mail software vendor EmU Tech, the barrage of animated and graphical reindeers, Santas and Christmas tree novelties dominating e-mail systems at Christmas might look cute but, collectively, they can be dangerous.
And the cyber-scrooge with the 'cure' was unrelenting in his pasting of the e-Christmas mail.
'Installation of e-mail screening firewalls is the latest answer to prevent junk e-mail hangovers,' Jones claimed, 'and some of Australia's leading organisations are already putting paid to the unwanted traffic into their e-mail systems.'
In this world of specialists, Australian-developed e-mail-filtering software from EmU Tech is carving a niche in managing the junk e-mail scourge.
EmU, which integrates with corporate e-mail servers, scans the content of messages and attachments, detecting words, phrases and attachment types (eg graphics) according to 'rules' an organisation sets to reflect e-mail policy.
If a message 'breaks a rule', EmU prompts actions such as: Delay, Isolate, Delete, Allow, Add a Footer, Blind Copy (BC) an administrator or manager, or send a reply to the sender.
Jones cited a recent case where the managing director of a well-known Sydney- based company questioned the value of such control over the e-mail . . . until his own IT manager brought up some examples of raunchy mpeg files . . . and the sale was closed immediately.
'Often companies with more than 200 users are operating over a 64Kbps Internet link, while larger organisations with more than 1000 users are commonly using 128Kbps links. While this in itself is not a problem, if a small number of users receive a graphical e-mail of 1.8MB, then forward it to 10 other people inside and outside the organisation, you can seriously compromise the efficiency of the system,' Jones insisted.
'When this kind of animated and graphical e-mail is rife, such as at Christmas, the consequences can be devastating, even with greater bandwidth,' Jones whined.
And with every such problem, of course there's a business opportunity. Jones forecast that almost every company would experience delayed e-mail and clogged links whilst the Christmas junk traversed, and the effect would probably be magnified with this year's millennium season.
'To spoil your client's staff's Christmas, call Emu Tech,' Jones sneared.
Emu Tech (02) 9882 0039
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