The Extent of Spam Messages

Around 45% of all emails are spam i.e. they are messages you do not want, have not signed up to receive and would stop if you could. But spammers send out billions of such unwanted messages every day in the hope of getting your attention and probably also wanting to make money out of you.

Spam is very wasteful – it clogs up your inbox, takes up your time and is almost entirely pointless.

Messages you don’t want to receive very little attention and nobody wants to buy from a business that has annoyed them.

Spam messages are most commonly some form of advertising (36%), finance (26%), social media notifications, reminders you don’t need, hoaxes, fake warnings, people trying to get attention and so on.

This does not include scams which is where the sender is intent on defrauding the recipients in some way.

There are millions of people and businesses sending out spam messages but around 80% of world-wide spam comes from about 100 scam groups that treat the sending of such messages on behalf of their clients as a viable business.

The cost of such time-wasting to business is estimated to be somewhere between ten and twenty billion dollars world-wide per year. This includes the cost of anti-spam services, employee time identifying spam messages and technical staff.

More spam emails originate in China than anywhere else, but vast amounts also originate in America and Europe.

Most spam is harmless but increasingly it is used to carry malware and that can be dangerous as thieves seek to copy your identity or infect your computer.

Q. Why is spam called spam?

Spam is a cheap tinned meat product that has been around since the 1930s. Some claim that the name Spam meaning unwanted emails comes from a 1970 Monty Python’s Flying Circus sketch in which a group of customers in a Spam-themed restaurant sing about Spam and everything on the menu is full of spam.

If you have any experiences with these scams do let me know, by email.

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