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Microsoft – Spammers Adopted New Means to Send Spam in H2 2008

Microsoft in its report, Security Intelligence Report (SIR) edition VI, says that spammers adopted various spamming trends in H2 2008.

According to the authors of the report, stock spamming, which was previously considered very lucrative means of deceiving people, seemed to have lost its pace. Microsoft's new report revealed that stock spam accounted for merely 0.6% of spam detected by content filters in H2 2008, down against 9.6% in H1 2008.

The report further discloses that stock-related spam has dropped as content filters blocked very limited number of those spam, as reported by CBCnews on April 8, 2009.

With the starting of global economic downturn, stock spam messages have slumped. This suggests to loosing attractiveness of stock spam because people become more cautious about their investments and take very few risks.

On the other hand, non-stock related spam became more popular in H2, 2008, with 3.8% of overall spam in that period. Mortgage refinancing and debt consolidation are some of the subjects hogged in limelight. Microsoft believes that the gap created due to slump in stock related spam is filled by these spam messages.

Besides, over 90% of e-mails entered inboxes in H2 2008 were spam, said report.

As per the report, Intercage (also called Atrivo) was de-peered in September 2008 by upstream providers. Security experts believed that Intercage used to provide services to spammers, but there wasn't much effect of its shutdown on spam volume. However, the shutdown of Intercage helped to close EstDomains, a notorious registrar that facilitated advertisers to host their domains for campaigning via spam messages.

There was a significant decline in spam messages after the shutdown of McColo, a web hosting company in California. On the very next day (November 12, 2008) of McColo closure, the spam volume fell by 45.9% of spam messages blocked by FOSE.

Security experts state that the closure of McColo had log-lasting impact on the volume of spam. The total spam volume in November tumbled 35.5% from October 2008 and continued at pre-November levels in December 2008.

However, Microsoft states that spam volume is again rising back to its normal level.

Related article: Microsoft Patches Live OneCare to Tackle Quarantined E-Mails

» SPAMfighter News - 14-04-2009

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