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Spam Rate Falls Drastically With Closer of McColo

Spam rates worldwide reduced drastically on November 13, 2008 after two leading ISPs cut off internet access, including McColo Corp, a San Jose, California-based Web hosting organization, as reported by Vnunet on November 13, 2008.

Security sources discovered that spam level reduced by 40%-75% after the company's server was disconnected. Because of the closing of server, the level of spam in 24 hours (between November 12 and 13 2008) was estimated at 11.9 messages per second against previous month, when the average was recorded at 30.1 messages per second. Though they have again risen, the reduction strongly suggests that a major part of the world's spam hails from McColo.

Jason Steer, Product Manager at IronPort, an online security company, said that McColo had several criminal companies to whom it turned a blind eye. He also said that it was responsible for both spam and other things like child pornography. He claimed that it was an unprecedented change in stance from ISPs that they had never encountered before, as reported by Vnunet on November 13, 2008.

The report given by a private security researcher, Jart Armin, who was investigating into McColo, says that the company was responsible for almost 50%-75% the world's spam which was estimated to be around 100 Billion mails per day.

Further, McColo was hosting the control and command systems of several leading botnets like Storm, Rustock, Pushdo, Srizbi, Mega-D and Dedler. All of them control an average of around 600,000 hacked systems which send spam mails in bulk.

But Jason added that closing of McColo servers would not have any impact on long term or medium term spam strategies of spammers as they will find other alternative. However, it was a step further in making it tough for hackers to earn money.

As per the security experts, the situation is exactly like which happened after another California-based Web hosting company Intercage was closed. At that time, the spam level dropped by around 10%, but again picked up shortly.

Related article: Spam Scam Bags a Scottish Connection

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