Spam going through the roof - it's official

Trotting round the various shows and conferences as I do, I've noticed a lot more people talking about spam email and how prevalent it's become in the last few months.

Some companies I've spoken to claim that spam now accounts for 60 per cent of their inbound email, which wastes their broadband and IT resources as a result.

Well now it's official, as a report just published by Secure Computing has concluded that spam levels are soaring. Even worse, new types of spam, notably image spam, has started chugging around the Net.

Image spam, which Secure Computing says has soared by 200 per cent in the last few months, now accounts for 30 per cent of spam overall.

The problem with image spam is that traditional anti-spam technology relies on content filtering to weed out the unwanted emails.

Image-based spam is a lot more difficult to detect and relies on heuristic analysis techniques, as well as information pooling from email users, to spot.

Chatting with one major chemical company last week, I found out that, by moving to a managed email service provider, its email volume dropped by two thirds, since spam was removed at the source.

Using this approach to spam saved the company tens of thousands of quids a year, as its Internet bandwidth requirements fell through the floor.

Spam is a massive problem for many companies it seems...