Ask Dave Taylor: Tech and Business


Is there such a thing as Plaxo spam?

I've been noticing that spammers are a wily lot, always subverting any popular tool to their own nefarious (or just plain annoying) purpose. While I've never been a fan of the Plaxo address book management site, I haven't actively disliked it either, until I realized that spammers had subverted it and are now sending out fake 'update your address' requests that can only be from spam address databases. When someone asked me a question about it, all the sticks lined up (think "i ching" :-) and I realized just how it all must work:

    Can I get Plaxo Spam?

The sad fact is that, yes, when you design software or a web-based service nowadays, you have to pay just as much attention to how people can subvert or twist it to their own needs as how well you're serving your customer. Just another facet of the selfishness and lack of looking at the common good that's too prevalent in certain business segments, I fear.