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12/17/2009
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IETF, BITS Financial Services And MAAWG Join Forces

New liaisons will help expedite the adoption of MAAWG best practices

San Francisco, Dec. 17, 2009 " Bolstering industry cooperation against malware, bots and spam, the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) has formalized new liaison relationships with the international standards body IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force), and BITS, the technology policy division of the Financial Services Roundtable representing 100 of the largest U.S. financial institutions providing banking, insurance, and investment products and services.

The new liaisons will help expedite the adoption of MAAWG best practices among a wider audience of industry professionals. The IETF is beginning work to convert selected MAAWG documents into industry-adopted Best Common Practices and will comment on MAAWG technology recommendations for tackling spam and malware. BITS will also provide important feedback to MAAWG working committees on email authentication and the specific messaging concerns facing the financial services industry.

"Sharing anti-abuse expertise and industry best practices is our first line of defense as the industry works to protect end-users. Our relationships with the IETF and BITS will be a conduit between the extensive knowledge of these organizations and the expertise of MAAWG members who are on the front lines of fighting spam. MAAWG members are ISPs, email providers, volume senders, social networking sites and anti-virus vendors, all of whom interface with users everyday," said MAAWG Chairman Michael O'Reirdan.

New Liaisons Expand Industry's Messaging Safety Efforts

As an industry association, MAAWG issues recommended best practices developed by its members. The IETF (www.ietf.org) is an international governing body overseeing Internet operations and will publish selected MAAWG work as industry-official Best Common Practices.

The IETF liaison to MAAWG, Barry Leiba, said, "The new liaison relationship between the IETF and MAAWG will give us a channel to get work flowing between the two organizations. We expect to get more input into IETF standards from MAAWG members, and to get more exposure and feedback on some of MAAWG's work by bringing it into the IETF."

The Financial Services Roundtable's BITS division (www.bits.org) will work with MAAWG on email authentication and other messaging issues.

BITS Vice President of Security Paul Smocer said, "We're pleased to form this formal liaison with MAAWG. Combating email abuse through strong email authentication is a priority for BITS members and their customers. MAAWG support to help promote email authentication is a clear indication of both the ISPs and messaging industry's commitment to consumer protection in general, and the financial services industry's efforts to work with our service providers." BITS focuses on strategic issues where industry cooperation serves the public good, such as critical infrastructure protection, fraud prevention, and the safety of financial services.

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 (www.MAAWG.org) 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.

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