Spam grows and grows

It’s amazing the amount of rubbish you get emailed on a daily basis. I use Spam Inspector for getting rid of all my Spam, although I have to say that it is $29.95 USD a year.

However, I’ve found it excellent at clearing out my Spam and affording me the option of reviewing it before things are totally deleted. I do have some of my own Outlook rules setup to capture the commonly used Spam keywords, but this only captures a few now and again that Spam Inspector misses.

Anyway, the example I was going to use was from today.

Now I sign up for new website mailing lists, etc with a new address for each site. For example, if I were to sign up for a mailing list here, I would use the email address of bruntonblog-updates@ and obviously the rest of my email address. I also try and keep the format changed in some manner when it’s straight up on the web, such as updates(at)myaddress@com for example. So I’m not too daft about giving out the right email address.

That doesn’t matter though, I’m just bombarded with email to multiple addresses I don’t even use. I guess that is the problem with using a catch-all address.

So today, back to today. Last night I closed my email at about midnight UTC, and then email was back by about 11am UTC today, so a period of about eleven hours. Now, I’m looking at a deleted items list comprising of seventy three emails. Of that four are straight spam (one of which is a Bank scam which I have entered fake details into through a web browser and anonymous foreign proxy!) and the other sixty four emails all contained viruses captured by Norton Anti-Virus software.

Stunning. Oh, I must say that I received probably about fourteen official emails. So, to summarise, in eleven hours I’ve received:

  • 92 emails received
  • 4 spam emails
  • 68 emails containing a virus
  • 14 emails actually intended for me

To me that’s horrific. I can’t believe how much rubbish is being sent over the Internet, and that means 15% of all email received in an eleven hour period was spam! I can’t begin to think what that would be for a twenty four hour period.

Something needs to be done. Laws need to be strengthened, Global laws and treaties need to be made to allow for cross border investigation and prosecution, and spam has to be stopped at the gateways, not the end user.

Imagine all that traffic has been flying from router to router across network upon network to reach me to be deleted. That’s the waste, not any hassle on my part to remove it, but the wasted bandwidth, processing time, etc on the machines that operate the Internet.

Why can’t Internet gateways and\or ISP’s simply check for valid email addresses before sending on the email. My local Spam system does this when I attempt to bounce or report a piece of Spam. It will tell me if it’s not valid and warn me. If this was done at the source, or at gateways, surely it would cut down on spam traffic quite radically?

Okay, I can imagine someone quoting resource or time for this action to be carried out, but surely this is less than carrying all this spam around the Internet. Think about those figures I showed for one user who is exceedingly careful about the use of their email address, and for an eleven hour period. Work that out for an hourly average for the Internet to cope with for all Domains and all users. Hell if I will, but it’s a damned lot!

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