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Europe Keeps Passing Out Spam

February 6, 2008 

For the third month in a row, spam originating from North America trailed that coming out of Europe, at least at first glance.

Security vendor Symantec said 78.5 percent of email in January consisted of spam. The approaching Valentine's Day holiday has prompted spammers to try targeting ads around the holiday. It's funny for a reason we'll look at in a moment.

The real point of interest comes from the shift of where spam originates. IP addresses can be faked, but what Symantec saw in January represented the continuation of a trend. For the third month running, it seems more spam (44 percent) comes from Europe than from North America (35.1 percent.)

Some of that spam purportedly offers tax refunds to lucky recipients from the IRS. Naturally this is a fake; the IRS does not provide official communications by email. Giving this fake site one's Social Security number, credit card details, and personal data to process the refund would be foolish.

As for that Valentine's Day spam of gift-giving ideas aimed at men, Symantec said the spam leads to a singles dating site. You'd best hope your spouse believes you when you tell her a dubious email that you should not have clicked on in the first place led you there.

Author:  David Utter

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