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India Tops Spam League, UK Levels Drop

Sophos has revealed its latest so-called "dirty dozen" report, which ranks the worst spam offending nations over the first quarter of this year.

And the surprising news is that the US is no longer top of the table, being displaced by India, a country which is now responsible for 9.3 per cent of all the spam in the world. The US was second on 8.3 per cent, followed by South Korea at 5.7 per cent.

Indonesia and Russia were joint fourth on a figure of 5 per cent, with Italy very close behind on 4.9 per cent. There was good news for the UK, however, as we dropped out of the top twelve table, with spam levels down to 1.6 per cent.

The overall throughput of spam email was also found to have decreased year-on-year, partially due to the better efforts of service providers to combat the mass email menace, but also a refocusing by the spammers themselves.

On the Sophos blog, Graham Cluley noted: "Spammers are increasingly finding traditional email spam ineffective, turning to social networks to spread these kinds of marketing spam campaigns instead."

"Facebook and Twitter have for some time been targeted with campaigns but, most recently, hot new social network Pinterest has been used by spammers to distribute posts linking to webpages offering to sell goods, or earning commission for the spammers."

The other worrying trend is that while overall levels of spam might be abating, the percentage of spam mails which aren't just harmless marketing, but carry a malware/phishing payload, is increasing.

Source: Sophos