Symantec released its February state of spam report and Europe has become the center of the spam universe.
In its report, Symantec said:
The percentage of spam messages that claimed to originate from Europe is now significantly greater than the percentage of spam messages originating from North America. Approximately 44 percent of all spam email now claims to originate from Europe versus 35.1 percent claiming to originate from North America. This new trend has occurred and remained constant in each of the last three months, beginning in November 2007. When Symantec first started recording this data in August of 2007, 30.6 percent of spam originated in Europe while 46 percent originated in North America.
However, spammers do try to disguise their actual location so Europe may just be a convenient passing point. Symantec also noted that a big spam jump in Europe has corresponded with broadband access across the population.
Other notable nuggest from the report:
- Spam breakdown by category.
- Spam is seasonal so look out for Valentine's Day spam and the IRS scams.
- Sixty-four percent of messages are 2KB to 5 KB in size. Spam with images runs between 10KB and 50KB, which can clog email infrastructure. In January 2008, the total spam that contained an attachment as an image was less than 8 percent of spam.
- Spammers continue to abuse Google for attacks. Symantec notes: "This month Symantec has observed the introduction of the spam domain directly into the “Search String”. The URL provided in the spam mail looks like a “Search String” but it when clicked upon it opens up the spam domain mentioned at the end of the URL rather than opening any search results."