Introducing the Webb Spam Corpus: Using email spam to identify Web spam automatically Conference Paper uri icon


  • Just as email spam has negatively impacted the user messaging experience, the rise of Web spam is threatening to severely degrade the quality of information on the WorldWideWeb. Fundamentally, Web spam is designed to pollute search engines and corrupt the user experience by driving traffic to particular spammed Web pages, regardless of the merits of those pages. In this paper, we identify an interesting link between email spam and Web spam, and we use this link to propose a novel technique for extracting large Web spam samples from the Web. Then, we present the Webb Spam Corpus - a first-of-its-kind, large-scale, and publicly available Web spam data set that was created using our automated Web spam collection method. The corpus consists of nearly 350,000 Web spam pages, making it more than two orders of magnitude larger than any other previously cited Web spam data set. Finally, we identify several application areas where the Webb Spam Corpus may be especially helpful. Interestingly, since the Webb Spam Corpus bridges the worlds of email spam and Web spam, we note that it can be used to aid traditional email spam classification algorithms through an analysis of the characteristics of the Web pages referenced by email messages.

author list (cited authors)

  • Webb, S., Caverlee, J., & Pu, C.

publication date

  • January 2006