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Excessive SPAM.

And it's on the increase...

   
12:08 am on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



Some interesting, and I thought shocking stats about spam:

My Outlook SPAM folder is set to delete after 14 days.
There are currently 1874 messages in there.
My spam filter says it's only passed 4.3% of all mail.
That means that I've recieved 43,581 spam mails in 14 days.
Or approx 3,000 every day.

I find that extremely shocking. How much bandwidth must be wasted on my small server alone.

According to my spam logs, in Dec 06 the spam volume decreased dramatically, I don't really know why.

When this guy was arrested, I didn't notice anything.
[news.bbc.co.uk...]

But since about July/August the numbers of spam emails are steadily rising again, and are back to levels last year. At it's peak it bounced almost 5,000 mails in one day.

Can anyone relate to this, or know why the amount suddenly dropped and is now rising?

10:55 am on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I doubt that the arrest of the individual mentioned would have any effect on overall spam levels. The media call him the "Spam King", but they would wouldn't they? He is just one of many.

My own spam level dropped significantly for a while, but just as I was being optimistic it returned to its previous level. It turned out my hosting company was having problems with a mail server. Being conscientious they didn't lose anything and carefully saved all my spam to send to me afterwards. :(

Current spam email levels running at 300+ per day. It has on occasion hit 1000.

The only solution I can see is aggressive legal action against spammers, but that would involve international cooperation and a hefty rise in law enforcement costs. So unlikely to happen.

11:27 am on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I've seen a massive increase over the last 6 weeks both via email and especially blog comment spam :(
11:36 am on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Would the blog spam include
"Hello, Your site is great."

181,000 hits for that one.

11:48 am on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I doubt that the arrest of the individual mentioned would have any effect on overall spam levels

No, but a public execution would make some of them do something else. That's not possible of course (even though spammers deserve it), but having those guys arrested and put behind bars will ensure that criminals pay for their crimes, right now they are effectively immune which is why they continue their activities because doing other crimes would result in a prison sentence.

12:16 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



having those guys arrested and put behind bars will ensure that criminals pay for their crimes

I agree. But the point I was making was that to do catch the spammers will cost an awful lot of money, which tax payers may not be ready to pay. It's also an international issue. Even countries keen to ban the practice probably do not yet have effective legislation in place.

If of course legislation is possible. How do you distinguish between email spam and a mail shot? Same purpose, different media. The answer might be to increase the cost of emails, but nobody would want that.

Possibly spammers can be nicked if they are promoting porn. But the definition of p 0rn is not the same everywhere.

It will be interesting to see the outcome of the 'spam king' proceedings and what sentence (if any) is passed. As I read it he has been charged with identity theft, not sending spam.

[edited by: lawman at 5:47 pm (utc) on Oct. 15, 2007]

12:20 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator lawman is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



But the definition of p 0rn is not the same everywhere

I like what Potter Stewart said about it. :)

[edited by: lawman at 5:47 pm (utc) on Oct. 15, 2007]

12:25 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



The solution is this: put a bounty on their heads. They are not acting alone and there kind of people they deal with are not exactly the most loyal type - they will sell them out for a good price, become witnesses in courts etc.
12:38 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



"I know it when I see it" - me too, but hardly helpful as a legal definition. From what I read the US Supreme Court has passed the buck back to state legislators.

So who reads the 'divine Marquis'? Outright p 0rn? Or world class literature?

[edited by: lawman at 5:47 pm (utc) on Oct. 15, 2007]

12:41 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



put a bounty on their heads

For doing what precisely?

12:59 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



For doing what precisely?

For providing any information that will lead to a conviction in court - those guys are not just spamming, they are also most likely evading taxes, using stolen credit cards, drive through red lights etc. Remember - Al Capone was done for tax evasion, not murders, so if this information leads to jail time for those guys then it is good information even if it does not concern with actual spamming.

1:23 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Aren't you being a little over-enthusiastic? Putting a bounty on the head of anyone using a stolen credit card, one can imagine. But tax evasion and running red lights? And if the prosecution isn't successful, does the bounty hunter get sued?

Mind you I am all in favour of tough action. Maybe we could form a vigilante committee, organise a posse, and string 'em all up? Yee-haw!

2:06 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Not anyone, but leaders of those groups - organisers who make most profits from those activities. There are probably no more than 10 individuals whose actions account for 90% of spam in the world: take those guys out and make it clear that anyone who makes Top 10 next will have the same fate.

Now being a vigilante might sound attractive but it really is not - going to jail for beating up those guys is not going to help anything, so there is a need for legal action - putting a bounty on heads of those who mainly organise it is the way forward. But of course big anti-spam industry with hundreds of millions of dollars in revenues per year won't approve of this action.

3:12 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I think you may be being too lenient on the human character. I doubt there are 10 top individuals who can be blamed, but many thousands of independant operators in the spam business. And if Joe Public could see a way to get rich with it, and had the technical knowledge, there would probably be millions of people spamming away like mad.

As for the second part of my last post, I was attempting to be ironic, although I obviously failed.

5:49 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator lawman is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



As for the second part of my last post, I was attempting to be ironic, although I obviously failed.

The Yeehaw gave it away. :)

"I know it when I see it" - me too, but hardly helpful as a legal definition.

Correct, not a legal definition. A more complete quote:

I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description [hard-core pornography]; and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it . . .
7:56 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



Correct, not a legal definition. A more complete quote

Actually, in the UK anyway, there is a legal definition. In accordance with distance marketing rules, they must provide an opt-out.

Therefore, any advertising email sent without, i.e. 99.9% of all junk email, is classified as spam.

8:16 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I doubt there are 10 top individuals who can be blamed, but many thousands of independant operators in the spam business.

Actually a few individuals provide vast majority of spam - it is very cost effective to pay bounties to take them down, though it is not clear if their place won't be taken by someone else - to ensure this does not happen those in top 10 should go to jail for a very long time.

Sure there are hundreds of smaller operators - but you don't need to put $1mln USD on their heads! These people are often located in countries where $50k is a very big amount, so getting those is doable as well.

10:12 pm on Oct 15, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator lawman is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Actually, in the UK anyway, there is a legal definition.

Sorry Dabrowski, I got a little off-topic. I wasn't referring to spam. :)

5:03 pm on Oct 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



Sorry Dabrowski, I got a little off-topic. I wasn't referring to spam. :)

My fault, I didn't read the whole thread, not enough time so just read the last couple!

 

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