Spam statistics

Got an interesting email from Project Honeypot this week. Project Honeypot works against spammers who harvest email addresses from websites, which is illegal in some countries. You can either install a honeypot on your site, or a link to someone else’s honeypot. Spammers who harvest the addresses on those honeypot pages get email addresses that go Project Honeypot, who collate the data and pass on information to law enforcement agencies to prosecute the spammers. This week, they got their one billionth piece of email spam. To celebrate, they’ve compiled a report about spam and the scum that send it.

Some fun facts from the report:

  • Monday is the busiest day of the week for email spam, Saturday is the quietest
  • 12:00 (GMT) is the busiest hour of the day for spam, 23:00 (GMT) is the quietest
  • Finland has some of the best computer security in the world, China some of the worst
  • Spammers take holidays too: spam volumes drop nearly 21% on Christmas Day and 32% on New Year’s Day
  • Every time your email address is harvested from a website, you can expect to receive more than 850 spam messages
  • It takes the average spammer two and a half weeks from when they first harvest your email address to when they send you your first spam message, but that’s twice as fast as they were five years ago

There was a spam trend in 2006-2007 to use combinations of dictionary words as the From name, like Unprovoked V. Washstands and Squirrelling H. Midmost. I kept a list of the best ones. Most of the spam I get these days is for fake drugs and fake watches. If someone invents a fake watch that can deliver fake drugs, it could halve my spam-load…

Comment spam has increased in the last couple of weeks, normally I get maybe one a week, now I’m getting one or two a day. Akismet is wonderful for keeping them unpublished.

3 thoughts on “Spam statistics”

  1. Our local mediacom changed their email service a couple of weeks ago, and since then we’ve been inundated with spam. I rarely use that account anymore, and so when they sent out a message saying that you had to varify your account – because of the spam problem – I decided to let it go. Good ridance!

  2. It takes the average spammer two and a half weeks from when they first harvest your email address to when they send you your first spam message, but that’s twice as fast as they were five years ago

    Yay efficiency improvements! =:o> If they could just get that lag time down to less than a day, though, it’d make it much easier to keep track of where exactly was bad place to put your email address…

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