[rfc-i] Fwd: I-D ACTION:draft-hoffman-rfc-author-guide-00.txt

Henning Schulzrinne hgs at cs.columbia.edu
Tue Sep 7 19:01:29 PDT 2004

Bob Braden wrote:

> The RFC Editor would very much like to require full contact
> information, but increasingly we have authors who are unwilling to have
> complete information listed.  Some claim to not have a fixed address
> (and since the Dot-com bust, this is quite common!).  More distressing
> is the problem of spammers harvesting email addresses from RFCs.  We
> really want contact information for authors, but how do we provide it
> without helping the spammers?  Maybe the email addresses should be in a
> separate database? But that would seem to simply make the spammer job
> easier.

There seem to be two kinds of spammers in this context: the automatic 
web-harvesting robots that suck up millions of addresses and the more 
retail-level gatherers of email addresses, such as head hunters. Is the 
concern both or mostly the former? My perception, backed by experiments 
on "honeypot" web pages, is that simply obscuring of email addresses, 
such as braden-at-isi.edu, maybe even braden @ isi.edu, or 
braden%40isi.edu will fool automated address harvesters.

If the address database is protected by something as simple as the 
image-recognition "Turing" test, robot address crawlers would not be 
able to get to them.


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