An Ottawa high-tech company’s newest product targets spam - but maybe not in the places you’d think.
Lionhardt Technologies’ Lionytics interface allows software developers to put anti-spam barriers in their code and works with virtually any language and development tool. What sets Lionytics apart is where it targets unwanted content: It scans not only e-mail accounts, but everything from Twitter and YouTube to Tumblr and Pinterest, hunting down spam, X-rated material, phishing sites, malware and the dreaded 419 or “Nigerian” scams.
“Spam just doesn’t originate in your e-mail inbox any more,” said Lionhardt CEO Richard Eradus. “It’s everywhere.”
Mr. Eradus said he and his team got the idea for the innovative anti-spam tool after working on Twitilla, the firm’s defunct Twitter management service. Twitilla analyzed data and advised its users who they should follow and unfollow on Twitter, and in the process Mr. Eradus and his team made an interesting discovery.
“I figured out pretty fast there was a lot of spam on Twitter,” he said. “I figured you have to do something with this data.”
About six months ago, Lionhardt did, launching Lionytics. The interface can scan any web-based, desktop or mobile device application to see if it contains spam. It then alerts the application’s developers about the nuisance material so they can write code to block it out.
While potential customers aren’t exactly beating a path to the company’s Riverside South office door - “It’s reaching the developers that’s the bane of marketing,” said Mr. Eradus - so far, the feedback has been encouraging.
“The response has been pretty good,” said Mr. Eradus. “We have a few companies testing it out and everybody is pleased with the product.”
Lionhardt is also hoping to expand the market for Lionytics beyond developers, with plans to launch an Outlook plug-in for home and office users in the next couple of weeks. The firm’s next project will likely be a program that blocks unwanted phone calls and texts from spammers and telemarketers.
Mr. Eradus, who moved to Ottawa from the Netherlands about five years ago, said he’s happy with the direction his small, three-person operation is heading, even if sales aren’t going through the roof.
“It’s a slow climbing trend,” he said.