Terry Zink: Security Talk

Discussing Internet security in (mostly) plain English

Frequency of spam - distribution by category

Frequency of spam - distribution by category

  • Comments 9

On another news website that talks about image-only spam,  Craig Sprosts, senior product manager at IronPort says that they are generally seeing the same spam topics. "Drugs remain number one," says Sprosts. "We're seeing an increase in stock spam. Adult spam remains significant but is not the top spam topic."

We don't keep an exact breakdown of spam by category, but by my estimation the following list is an approximation of how frequently spam occurs:

  • Products (ie, win a free this or that)
  • Pharmacy (excluding ads for Viagra and Cialis)
  • Stock spam
  • Financial spam
  • Dating/porn
  • Enlargement pills (including Viagra and Cialis)
  • Get-Rich-Quick schemes
  • 419s
  • Phishing
  • Software
  • Gambling
  • University

Note that by splitting up Enlargement Pills from Pharmacy, the Products category takes first place.  It is debatable whether or not I put things like weight loss pills in Products so I think those first two categories may be interchangeable.  Still, this is a rough order of what we are seeing and it corresponds to what IronPort is saying. 

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