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Commtouch Reports 60% of All Spam in March Originated from the United States
[April 01, 2004]

Commtouch Reports 60% of All Spam in March Originated from the United States

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. --(Business Wire)-- April 1, 2004 -- Commtouch (Nasdaq:CTCH)--

-- 3 months after CAN-SPAM law enacted, no slow-down in spam volume

-- Head of Institute for Spam and Internet Public Policy sees more concerted effort in prosecuting companies making a difference in the long-run

Commtouch(R) (Nasdaq:CTCH), a global developer and provider of proprietary anti-spam solutions featuring Recurrent Pattern Detection (RPD)(TM) technology, said its spam detection center and Commtouch Spam Lab saw a new record high of spam outbreaks and spam messages in the month of March 2004.

Analyzing over one million spam messages in the month of March, Commtouch identified spam being sent from Internet Protocol (IP) addresses in 152 countries. The volume of spam email was greatest from the following countries:

US - 60%

China - 6%

Korea - 5%

Canada - 4%

Brazil - 3%

Spain - 2%

France - 2%

UK - 1%

Germany - 1%

Netherlands - 1%

Mexico - 1%

Israel - 1%

Japan - 1%

Other territories from which spamming activity was evident included: Poland, Austria, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Chile. Of the spam email originating in the United States during March, 3.5% complied with the CAN-SPAM legislation, i.e. included a valid return address, did not have a deceptive subject or headers, had a postal address in the body and a way to unsubscribe.

In the month of March, spam originated from 152 countries, including places most people probably wouldn't suspect as being home bases for spammers -- Afghanistan, Guinea, Tunisia and Eritrea, said Commtouch Executive Vice President Avner Amram. What we're seeing is that CAN-SPAM can't. On the one hand, CAN-SPAM can't be extended to non-U.S. countries, but on the other hand, even in the United States we're seeing that CAN-SPAM hasn't yet resulted in a decrease in spam.

In other spam trend reporting for the month of March, Commtouch today also noted that fraudulent emails are on the rise, with more than 200 phishing attacks identified during March. The main victims of those phishing attacks were eBay, PayPal and Citibank users. Phishing is the act of sending an email to a user falsely claiming to be an established legitimate enterprise in an attempt to scam the user into surrendering private information that will be used for identity theft. The email directs the user to visit a Web site where they are asked to update personal information, such as passwords and credit card, social security and bank account numbers that the legitimate organization already possesses. The Web site, however, is bogus and set up only to steal the user's information.

Said Anne P. Mitchell, president and CEO of the Institute for Spam and Internet Public Policy: For the immediate future and long run, anti-spam technologies that identify and block spam emails sent in large volumes from anywhere on the globe, no matter their language, are useful and will continue to be vital in the fight against spam. But legal processes that can be set into motion now and result in the collection of damages down the road is necessary to make spam an expensive proposition. The fact is that the majority of spam is U.S.-based. With that acknowledged, CAN-SPAM, which now empowers U.S. prosecutors to go after those that are actually advertised in the spam emails, can in the long-run yield verdicts that attach a high price to associating with spammers, and in effect undermine the business of spam.

Commtouch's spam detection center and RPD(TM) technology do not analyze content of messages, but automatically detect spam in every language seconds after the distribution of a spam attack regardless of whether the language is single byte or double byte, written left to right, right to left or up to down. Commtouch anti-spam solutions do not look at the text or the content of a message; rather they automatically identify certain recurrent patterns in email messages.

Commtouch's anti-spam approach is immune to spammer detection avoidance techniques and provides protection against spam sent in any language or in any message format, said Amram. Spammers fool content-based anti-spam solutions by altering the spelling of certain words while maintaining the gist of their marketing message. But there are three letters in the English alphabet that spammers are going to have a big problem with: 'R, P, D' -- short for Recurrent Pattern Detection.

About Commtouch

Commtouch Software Ltd. is a global developer and provider of proprietary anti-spam solutions. Its mission is to protect and preserve the integrity of the world's most important communications tool -- email. The company's core technologies reflect its 13 years of experience as a leading vendor of email software applications and provider of global messaging services. Commtouch's patent-pending technologies are employed in solutions that are sold through channels and resellers and also sold directly to enterprises. In addition, Commtouch anti-spam technologies are incorporated in software applications of security and messaging OEMs. Commtouch is headquartered in Netanya, Israel and its subsidiary, Commtouch Inc., is based in Mountain View, CA. The company was founded in 1991 and has been publicly traded since 1999 (Nasdaq:CTCH). To learn more about Commtouch visit

This press release contains forward-looking statements, including projections about our business, within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. For example, statements in the future tense, and statements including words such as expect, plan, estimate, anticipate, or believe are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on information available to us at the time of the release; we assume no obligation to update any of them. The statements in this release are not guarantees of future performance and actual results could differ materially from our current expectations as a result of numerous factors, including business conditions and growth or deterioration in the Internet market, commerce and the general economy both domestic as well as international; fewer than expected new-partner relationships; competitive factors including pricing pressures; technological developments, and products offered by competitors; availability of qualified staff for expansion; and technological difficulties and resource constraints encountered in developing new products as well as those risks described in the company's Annual Reports on Form 20-F and reports on Form 6-K, which are available through

Recurrent Pattern Detection and RPD are trademarks and Commtouch is a registered trademark of Commtouch Software Ltd.

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