Solving CAPTCHAS as cottage industry

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Make big money! $.80 to $1.20 per 1,000

People in China, Bangladesh and China are bidding on jobs solving CAPTCHAS so spammers can create new email accounts, but the work is a bit tedious, according to a story in the New York Times.

Many brokers and middlemen who manage the service for spammers and do the hiring are finding it difficult to make a profit.

CAPTCHAS is an acronym for “completely automated public Turing test to tell computers and humans apart” and are used by Web email providers to prevent spammers from using automated agents to create new email accounts to send spam.

Macduff Hughes, an engineering director at Google said “It can’t be helped that paid human solvers will be able to solve CAPTCHAS. Our goal is to make mass account creation less attractive to spammers, and the fact that spammers have to pay people to solve CAPTCHAS proves that the tool is working.”

Story here: “Spammers Pay Others to Answer Security Tests

Well, it’s at least good to know that all that irritating spam is providing spending money for adolescents in third world countries. But that’s a little bit like saying that the upside to the Irish potato famine was that it made work for businesses that sold coffin hinges.

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