Home > Uncategorized > Will the first pass on a Turing test come from spammers?

Will the first pass on a Turing test come from spammers?

April 15, 2008

CAPTCHA stands for “Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.”  Well, OK, Turing test may be a bit strong for what is essentially really hard OCR, but passing a good CAPTCHA shows at least some proficiency with pattern recognition. Now that the GMAIL and HotMail CAPTCHA’s have been cracked*, CAPTCHA’s will presumably become harder still.  Eventually, you might get a brief reading comprehension test, or more probably be told to identify a picture.  What happens when spammers crack these?  Eventually, computers may become indistinguishable from humans in automated tests.  Of course that’s a long way from passing a true Turing test, but it wouldn’t surprise me if some advances in AI are made by malware developers. 

* Of course, the spammers haven’t really “cracked” these in the sense of being able to do them well every time.  They only need to succeed a significant minority of the time for their goals.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. April 16, 2008 at 06:47 | #1

    I am pretty sure there’s some kind of large-scale project going on in the hacker community.  We keep getting mysterious ‘random-letter spam’.  Akismet filters out most of it but it is getting better at getting past the barrier.

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