For Gold, Peace, and Freedom


Spam Takes Over More Than 90 Percent of Emails

December 26th, 2007

spam-wars.jpgIn spite of a recent bout of blog comment spam, it seems that I have survived the “spam wars” relatively unscathed so far. According to an article at nvunet.com that cites a recent report by Barracuda Networks, the global proportion of spam has now risen to 90 and 95 percent of all email communications. By contrast, I was receiving a spam ratio of around 55 percent at my old Excite email address that I am now in the process of abandoning. Meanwhile, my Gmail address has remained almost completely spam free, and my recent installation of the WP-SpamFree plugin has practically eliminated automated comment spam here at Karlonia.

The reference to the nvunet.com article was one of the interesting tidbits of information that I picked up from the latest edition of John Graham-Cumming’s anti-spam newsletter, which I have reprinted below for your reading pleasure.

Welcome to issue #67. This slightly late newsletter is probably the last one of 2007. Have a good holiday if you are getting a break.

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Today is POPFile release day and we’ve finally decided to call this release v1.0.0. If you are POPFile user then v1.0.0 is a recommended update since it has better IMAP support, performance improvements, support for Windows Vista and Japanese users get a grab bag of improvements.


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There’s still time to submit to Sicherheit 2008 (see schedule below). The extended deadline is not January 15.


The MIT Spam Conference is on and reviewers have been selected. Remember that this year papers can be submitted at any time up to the final date (1 March 2008) for consideration. The earlier you submit, the earlier you’ll have an answer.


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The BBC did a nice little investigation of a pill spammer for Radio 4. You can read (and listen to) the report here:

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The MailChannels blog reports on a mid-year report from IBM about spam and phishing attacks. To me the most interesting part is the chart showing the growth in spam sizes (per message) with a drop off this year as large image and PDF spam came and went.


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ZDNet had an interesting piece about the malware economy. Looks like competition is driving prices down and causing some people to get out of the game altogether.


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Michael Shannon tells us about a report that 95% of all mail is now spam. How long before spammers kill the host?


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Willam Brown writes to mention a site concerning email standards:

While not strictly spam related I thought I’d share this interesting site I came across this morning. They developed an acid test for email clients to check how well various mail clients support various web standards.


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Free and Open Source Anti-spam Software News
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This section lists the latest news on versions and releases of Free and Open Source Anti-spam tools. If you have a tool that you think should be listed here then email antispam(at)jgc.org and I’ll think about including it.

- - Just POPFile, see above.

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- - MIT Spam Conference (Cambridge, MA) March 27-28, 2008

- - Sicherheit 2008 (Saarbrucken, Germany) April 2-4, 2008

- - CEAS 2008 (Mountain View, CA) August 21-22, 2008

- - VB 2008 (Ottawa, ON) October 1-3, 2008

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About the author
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John Graham-Cumming is the author of the popular and award-winning email classification and spam fighting tool POPFile and a frequent writer and speaker on spam and anti-spam topics. He’s also Founder (at large) at Electric Cloud, Inc., a Mountain View, California start-up specializing in distributing and speeding up software builds.

He makes a living as a consultant writing software, white papers, magazine articles, doing web casts and conference presentations. He also sells anti-spam and email sorting software called polymail.

More about John can be found at http://www.jgc.org/. More on polymail can be found at http://www.extravalent.com/.

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