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Spam United States Your Rights Online

U.S. is World Leader in Spam 398

adept256 writes "Sophos outs 'dirty dozen' spam producing countries. And the USA is in the lead by a country mile. 'The United States is far and away the worst offender, accounting for nearly 60 percent of the world's spam. Even though European countries are responsible for less spam, they are still generating millions of junk emails a day,' said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos."
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U.S. is World Leader in Spam

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  • Re:Nigeria? (Score:5, Informative)

    by cfradenburg ( 592693 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @10:46AM (#8407662)
    This isn't who is writing the email is. It's where the computer that sends it out is. The article mentions that Russia should be higher on the list but a lot of SPAM is sent through compromised computers in America.
  • by rokzy ( 687636 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @10:52AM (#8407726)

    it isn't a case of "one spam for every x legitimate emails"

    the number of spam emails and legitimate emails are completely unrelated.
  • by Space cowboy ( 13680 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @10:56AM (#8407774) Journal
    The spamhaus [spamhaus.org] website has been listing the USA for a loooong time now as the #1 spam source. It's got the names of the top spammers there too...

  • by rduke15 ( 721841 ) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .51ekudr.> on Friday February 27, 2004 @10:57AM (#8407791)
    A lot comes from Asian computers, but if you look into the spam itself (what it sells -> who is actually selling it), most comes in fact from the US.
  • by LittleLebowskiUrbanA ( 619114 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @10:57AM (#8407793) Homepage Journal
    Florida! Thanks to its weak [theregister.co.uk] spam laws.
  • by Albanach ( 527650 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:00AM (#8407822) Homepage
    You mean like .us ? That's the top level domain for the United States. There's a list here [edu-cyberpg.com]
  • by hrath ( 5792 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:01AM (#8407836)
    One of the most effective means of dealing with Spam & when being required to hand out an email address is Spamgourmet (http://www.spamgourmet.com). You create an account and can then use unique email addresses of the form ..@spamgourmet.com . The cool thing about this is that for each email received on this account the counter is decreased and once it reaches zero all further emails will be discarded. This is great to hand out if you're ordering something from an online store and only want to receive 1-3 emails for order confirmation/shipment but not get any future spams.

    The service is free and offers a couple of other neat features. I've been using it for about a year and it's been very reliable.

    Highly recommended.

  • by Flyboy Connor ( 741764 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:04AM (#8407871)
    Not so many anymore from the Netherlands since the police came down hard on a group of about fifty 419 spammers in Amsterdam.
  • BZZZT! Wrong! (Score:5, Informative)

    by goldspider ( 445116 ) <.ardrake79. .at. .gmail.com.> on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:08AM (#8407904) Homepage
    "Do you know what the national debt means? It means you bought an amount of 7 000 billions of goods to other countries without paying them"

    Your own explanation demonstrates perfectly that you are the one who doesn't know what the national debt is.

    Simply stated, the national debt is what taxpayers owe the treasury for purchases made by the government. When the amount of money spent by the government exceeds the amount of tax money collected, you have a budget deficit. The national debt is the total amount, plus interest, owed to the treasury.

    It has nothing to do with international trade. I believe what you are refering to is called a "trade deficit".

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:17AM (#8408004)
    Just like our beloved "War On Drugs" why don't we go after DEMAND?. Has no one suggested Legislation that says the company paying for the advert is in violation? Spammers spam because people pay them. Suppose every merchant who is being advertised was liable for monetary damages. Even $5 would be a large enough deterrent. Heck, NutriSystem would have paid my bills for a year now.
  • by Spacelord ( 27899 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:20AM (#8408034)
    Actually Europe has more people online now than the US.
  • In Sweden.. (Score:2, Informative)

    by Pidder ( 736678 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:32AM (#8408158)
    Spam is a serious issue in Sweden too. Our biggest ISP, Telia, have been hit so hard the last couple of weeks that delivering a mail from Telia to Sunet (the univerisity net) is taking up to 10 minutes. That's a HUGE delay compared to the milliseconds it used to take.
  • Re:So... (Score:3, Informative)

    by Vellmont ( 569020 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:39AM (#8408228) Homepage
    The important statistic is:
    percentage of spam/number of IP address in a country.

    My guess is that number is fairly high for Brazil. As for the "blocked by asshat american sysadmins" most people are using spamassassin and other score based spam tools these days, not simple IP blocking. I don't get much legit email from Brazil (I don't think I ever have), so if I do it's more than likely spam. Giving it a spam score to reflect that seems perfectly acceptable. As far as those that do simple IP blocking, it's not just American admins, everyone around the world does it.
  • by mumblestheclown ( 569987 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @12:09PM (#8408522)
    I updated and fixed the numbers a bit and added another column for number of internet users and recomputed the scores.

    While I don't want to claim that this sort of back of the envelope estimate is truly explanatory, it does suggest, for example, that Germany and the UK have been quite effective while other places have not. Again, the last column is a score, where lower is better.

    1. United States 56.74% 294 518 186 328
    2. Canada 6.80% 32 471 17 250
    3. China (& Hong Kong) 6.24% 1327 21266 80 1,282
    4. South Korea 5.77% 48 832 26 451
    5. Netherlands 2.13% 16 751 11 516
    6. Brazil 2.00% 166 8300 14 700
    7. Germany 1.83% 82 4481 45 2,459
    8. France 1.50% 60 4000 22 1,467
    9. United Kingdom 1.31% 59 4504 35 2,672
    10. Australia 1.21% 19 1570 13 1,074
    11. Mexico 1.19% 95 7983 10 840
    12. Spain 1.05% 41 3905 14 1,333
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 27, 2004 @12:31PM (#8408773)
    Not in this case. It should be "whose" not "who's".
  • by Guru2Newbie ( 536637 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @12:59PM (#8409058) Homepage
    You were asking for numbers? How about numbers direct from a spammer's e-mail?

    Here's a partial spam I received from silver star internet information company [] (wewe@hotmail.com), showing total (spammed) e-mail addresses by country, and associated industry categories. (These sums are likely valid only for the lists that this spammer sells...).

    And they spew:

    "We offer...e-mail addresses databases for advertisement mailing; we...also carry out mailing and hosting for the advertising projects . Their validity and originality are verified. please go to our web. There are some sample download."

    Country or area, total email addresses (in millions, typos left in):

    America 175

    Europe 156
    Asia 168
    China(PRC) 80
    HongKong 3.25
    TaiWan 2.25
    Japan 27
    Australia 6
    Canda 10
    Russia 38
    England 3.2
    German 20
    France 38
    India 12

    Category Name, total email addresses

    Apparel, Fashion, Textiles and Leather 4,654,565

    Automobile & Transportation 6,547,845
    Business Services 6,366,344
    Chemicals 3,445,565
    Computer & Telecommunications 654,655
    Construction & Real Estate 3,443,544
    Consumer Electronics 1,333,443
    Energy, Minerals & Metals 6,765,683
    Environment 656,533
    Food & Agriculture 1,235,354
    Gems & Jewellery 565,438
    Health & Beauty 804,654
    Home Supplies 323,232
    Industrial Supplies 415,668
    Office Supplies 1,559,892
    Packaging & Paper 5,675,648
    Printing & Publishing 6,563,445
    Security & Protection 5,653,494
    Sports & Entertainment 3,488,455
    Toys, Gifts and Handicrafts 2,135,654

  • by WIAKywbfatw ( 307557 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @12:59PM (#8409059) Journal
    Hey dumbass, the EU (which is basically every country in Western Europe apart from Switzerland and Norway) and the USA have roughly equal populations, so comparing Europe and the US is pretty fair. Heck, do you even know how much larger the US is than the entire European continent?

    If we did things your way you'd compare the US to Luxembourg, a nice country but with a population of only 386.000, which is smaller than most cities. Next time, dumbass, try comparing apples to apples, not apples to oranges.

    Pick up a book every once in a while and read something. You never know, you might learn actually learn something about physical and human geography or statistics or logic or (shock, horror) manners. Perhaps if you did that more often you'd be more than just a dumb ass yourself.
  • by Tripster ( 23407 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @01:21PM (#8409322) Homepage
    I run some Linux boxes for a cable ISP here in Canada, each headend goes through a Squid proxy which also doubles as a handy firewall.

    Once a week or so we turn on ntop for a few minutes and have a quick peek at who is moving what, if we notice any clients doing any outgoing scans on known virus ports we block them at the routers until they call in and clean the PC.

    Once a month we'll scan the network with nmap to see what ports people are listening on.

    Our mail servers scan incoming mail for viruses, if we see a cable client spewing viruses at it we block their SMTP access and block port 25 for them at the routers.

    After about a year of this, we have a very low infection rate when new viruses hit. We also block worm ports at the routers so those don't effect us as bad (still possible if some idiot with an infected laptop gets on the wrong side of the firewall).

    Our next step will likely be egress port 25 blocking entirely.
  • by paranode ( 671698 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @01:21PM (#8409324)
    You might find this graph [nationmaster.com] very interesting.
  • Re:Its no supprise. (Score:3, Informative)

    by AnotherBlackHat ( 265897 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @02:55PM (#8410347) Homepage
    So many broadband & other high-speed connections left wide open that can relay data.

    According to the article, 30% of the spam comes from trojaned boxes sending through their owners ISPs.

    -- this is not a .sig

  • by srvivn21 ( 410280 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @03:22PM (#8410631)
    Two things...

    1) The data from that graph appears to be from 2000 (the Computer Industry Almanac confirms [c-i-a.com] this, though I give no representation of their accuracy). I imagine that world wide computer usage has grown at a comperable (if not greater) rate than US usage in the interim.

    2) You seem to be implying that the statement "there are more computers outside the US than inside" is false. From your graph, the US contains 161,000,000 computers of 427,270,000 world wide, or under 38% of the world's computers. My appologies if I misinterpreted your intentions.

    Neither source contains information on what percentage of these computers is internet connected, so I don't know what relevance any of it has to this story.
  • by WIAKywbfatw ( 307557 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:36PM (#8414273) Journal
    As you've found out, coming up with an area for continental Europe isn't as easy as it first appears. If you want a comparison with the US, counting just the EU states allows you to compare similar populations (US has around 285 million people, EU has around 300 million) but clearly there are more countries in Europe than are included in the current membership of the EU.

    If you're going to compare x, y or z in the US to x, y or z in Europe, comparing the the US to the current EU membership has strong merit.

    Comparing the US to the entire continent isn't as valid, if you're concerned about comparing apples with apples: the population of the whole of Europe (as defined by that site) is in excess of 728 million, and a fair chunk of those people, perhaps even the majority, live in former Eastern Bloc countries that are hardly analogous to the US in terms of education, industry, technological development, etc. Some of them them are so poor that they could even be classed as developing nations.

    However, let's not talk about that for a second, let's talk about the physical (non-political) geography of continental Europe.

    The very site that you link to describes Turkey [wonderclub.com] as being in two continents, Asia and Europe. Istanbul, which lies on the entrance to the Black Sea in one of the most western parts of Turkey is commonly described as being the only city in the world that's in two continents too, so it's fair to say that anything to the south and the west of the Dardanelles, the Sea of Marmara and the Bosporus (collectively the channels that lead into the Black Sea, and all shown in the top left of this map [wonderclub.com]) is in Asia.

    So, very little of Turkey's 769,630 sq km of land mass is actually in Europe. I don't know the exact figure but, if I had to estimate, I'd say that somewhere around the 7 percent of the country is in Europe, give or take a couple of percentage points. So that's roughly 716,000 sq km (769,630 * 0.93 = 715,756) of Turkey that should be discounted.

    Similarly, including Georgia [wonderclub.com] and its 69,700 sq km is stretching it a bit too as, apart from the Russian Federation, it's only "European" neighbour is the eastern-most extreme of the Asian portion of Turkey. The other former Soviet states that are in the same region (Armenia and Azerbaijan) are classed as being in Asia, and it seems to me that the only reason for calling Georgia a European country is its small Black Sea coastline.

    Politically, these areas might be considered part of Europe but geographically they're clearly not.

    Even including Iceland, with its 100,250 sq km, could be considered a stretch, as it's hardly part of the continental geography. Heck, if they had put it in its real location rather than moving it for convenience then it wouldn't even be on that site's initial map of Europe!

    716,000 + 69,700 + 100,250 = 885,950 (For simplicities sake, let's call this 886,000.)

    So Asian Turkey plus Georgia and Iceland make up a fair chunk of land. If you take them away from the total land mass of Europe, given as 9,938,000 sq km by the same source, then you're left with an area of roughly 9,052,000 sq km.

    So it that it? No. It would be nice to be able to say so, but if I've demonstrated anything it's that how big Europe is is very dependent on how you define it in the first place. It's not as unambiguously defined as, say, North America or Africa, as the point at which Europe ends and Asia starts isn't exactly set in stone.

    Is the US bigger than continental Europe? I'd say so, for the reasons I've given above, and so would most others, but you're free to disagree.

    Even so, the point I was making to the AC to whom I was originally replying to was that comparing the US to any one country in Europe is not comparing like with like, and that's plain for any fool to see.
  • by metamatic ( 202216 ) on Saturday February 28, 2004 @11:13AM (#8416420) Homepage Journal
    On the contrary, SPF breaks RFC822.

    Currently my e-mail goes out via my ISP's SMTP server, with totally legitimate RFC822 headers in which all of the e-mail addresses are valid--From, Sender and envelope sender.

    SPF will make those perfectly valid e-mails bounce. Hence it's SPF that's at fault.

    Furthermore, the chances of my ISP deciding to implement pobox's special sender rewriting system are zero. What's in it for them? They'd much rather I used my address on their system, because it locks me in and makes it harder to change ISP. In fact, some ISPs (e.g. Verizon) do their best to prevent you using any kind of forwarding address.

    So how can I send mail? The only option left will be SMTP to pobox's SMTP server. Which you propose my ISP should block.

Logic is a pretty flower that smells bad.