Before we start, it'd probably be wise to point out that the SPIT we're referring to here is "Spam over Internet Telephony," not the stuff that formed those puddles around the iPhone booths the other week. NEC thinks that SPIT could potentially be the next big spam threat, and considering that SPIT combines the disruptive nature of junk phone calls with the ease of distribution of email based spam, it's easy to agree with this assessment. In order to preempt this threat, NEC has been hard at work on a piece of software called SEAL, which uses the Turing test to detect and then block any computer generated SPIT that it detects. A simulation showed that the SEAL software rejected 99 percent of the SPIT that it encountered: an impressive result, but the 1 percent that slips through could still potentially annoy a lot of people. Just think of how distracting each spam email that slips past your filter is, and then add the context of a ringing phone each time one arrives in your inbox: not cool. NEC hopes to improve the technology going forward, although as the current situation regarding email based spam shows, once the battle between prevention and the SPIT-spammers starts, it's unlikely to end decisively. NEC is showing off its SPIT-repelling SEAL software at the 3GSM World Congress 2007 this February and will continue to develop the solution until it's feasible to release it commercially.

[Via Digital World Tokyo]

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NEC invents 99 percent effective SPIT catcher