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Shock at 30 percent drop in spam

Broken botnet could be responsible

Global spam levels decreased by 30 percent over the past week according to email security firm SoftScan, but the company warned users that the growth in unsolicited email was far from over.

SoftScan said it was surprised at the fall as junk mail levels had been normal throughout December, with nine out of ten emails scanned being considered spam.

The exact cause of the 30 percent drop is still being investigated but it’s thought that it may be due to one of the main botnets that’s responsible for sending out spam email breaking and leading to temporary loss of control of the clients within its network.

Another theory is that the recent earthquake in Asia blocked spamming activity from the region. However this is thought to be less likely as the drop in spam distribution was seen to be gradual rather than instant.

Although the decrease in spam is encouraging, SoftScan warned that junk email is still a considerable concern that should be addressed by governments worldwide. “If spam distribution levels continue to rise at the rate we have seen over the last few months, then I would believe that by the end of 2007 governments worldwide will be obliged to enforce international anti-spam laws for the sake of commerce,” said Diego d’Ambra, chief technology officer of SoftScan.


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