SAN FRANCISCO, March 11 /PRNewswire/ --

Initiating a dialogue with ISPs on how to protect social sites from exploitation, Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist, asked network operators to trust that users will voluntarily report abuse and to cooperate with sites in building a safe online environment at the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) general meeting in San Francisco held Feb. 18-20. Over the course of the event, MAAWG committees completed a white paper on email authentication and updated best practices for volume email senders, both of which will be released to the industry within the next few weeks.

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A new subcommittee formed at the meeting began work focusing on DNS abuse and port 53 management, and the event also featured panels and committee discussions on filtering, monitoring outbound traffic, and other topics, according to Jerry Upton, MAAWG executive director. The MAAWG 12th General Meeting, attended by 300 industry professionals from over 20 countries, was the first of three meetings the organization will have this year to advance the technology, public policy and collaborative work necessary to fight messaging abuse and spam.

The organization's 2008 officers also were named at the meeting with Michael O'Reirdan, a distinguished engineer in national engineering and technical operations at Comcast, elected MAAWG chair. MAAWG vice-chairs for the year are Jonathan Curtis, sr. security architect, technology development at Bell Canada; and Charles Stiles, Goodmail Systems vice president of worldwide business development. Laurie Jill Wood, director of enterprise security at Charter Communications, continues as treasurer. All have been actively promoting cooperation among ISPs and vendors.

On the social networking panel, Newmark stressed the value of trusting users to report abuse of his or any other popular site, a theme reiterated by the other panelists from Google and Six Apart. At the same time, Newmark recognized the need for increased collaboration between ISPs and socially oriented sites to improve the experience for all users.

The social networking panel was one of more than 25 sessions and committee meetings organized during the event. The discussions between ISPs and social networking site operators will continue at the upcoming 13th MAAWG General Meeting, June 10-12 in Heidelberg, Germany, along with presentations on vital technical and public policy issues. More information is available at the MAAWG Web site,

About the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG)

The Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) is where the messaging industry comes together to work against spam, viruses, denial-of-service attacks and other online exploitation. MAAWG ( represents almost one billion mailboxes from some of the largest network operators worldwide. It is the only organization addressing messaging abuse holistically by systematically engaging all aspects of the problem, including technology, industry collaboration and public policy. MAAWG leverages the depth and experience of its global membership to tackle abuse on existing networks and new emerging services. Headquartered in San Francisco, Calif., MAAWG is an open forum driven by market needs and supported by major network operators and messaging providers.

Media Contact: Linda Marcus, APR, +1-714-974-6356,, Astra Communications

MAAWG Board of Directors: AOL; AT&T (NYSE: T); Bell Canada; Charter Communications (Nasdaq: CHTR); Cloudmark; Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA); Cox Communications; EarthLink (Nasdaq: ELNK); France Telecom (NYSE and Euronext: FTE); Goodmail Systems; Google Inc.; Openwave Systems (Nasdaq: OPWV); Return Path, Inc. (Full-Member representative to the Board); Time Warner Cable; Verizon Communications; and Yahoo! Inc.

MAAWG Full Members: 1&1 Internet AG; AG Interactive; Bizanga LTD; Internet Initiative Japan, (IIJ Nasdaq: IIJI); IronPort Systems; McAfee Inc.; MX Logic; Outblaze LTD; Return Path, Inc.; Sprint; Sun Microsystems, Inc.; Symantec; and Telefonica SA.

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Linda Marcus, APR, of Astra Communications, +1-714-974-6356,, for Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group. Photo: NewsCom:, AP Archive:, PRN Photo Desk,