Spam Volume Tumbles in January
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Spam is big business for its purveyors and an annoying and expensive burden for enterprises and consumers. Of the millions and millions of emails sent every day, the vast majority are unadulterated spam most often tempting would-be consumers with inexpensive medications.
But as eSecurity Planet reports, total spam volume fell to its lowest level in nearly two years in January mainly as a result of discontent among pharmaceutical spam affiliates and distributors and sudden halt in spam production from three prominent, spam-spewing botnets, according to security software maker Symantec.
The last time researchers recorded such a significant decline in total spam production was in March 2009 -- when spam accounted for 75.7 percent of all email traffic -- when McColo, a notorious spam-facilitating Internet service provider, was finally shut down.
Pharmaceutical spam in January still accounted for 59 percent of all spam in circulation, a jarring figure but a definite improvement from May 2010 when it reached its apex at 85 percent of all spam.
It's worth noting that in just one month, total spam identified by Symantec's MessageLabs researchers fell 3.1 percent.
"For now, it's clear that spam remains a profitable activity for spammers and there is no evidence to suggest that pharmaceutical spam is suffering any loss in profitability," the report said. "However, the closure of SpamIt re-shaped the activities of many of the major pharmaceutical spam gangs as pharmaceutical spam operations underwent restructuring and consolidation."