Sophos slams 'Uncle Spam'

IT security firm Sophos has slammed the US for failing to ‘get its own house in order’ before taking a leading role in tackling cyber-crime in its latest report on spam trends.

Sophos claims that during Q2/2009, the US continued to relay more spam than any other global nation – with the country’s 15.6 per cent contribution to global spam traffic meaning that one-in-six junk emails were sent through compromised computers in there. 

“President Barack Obama’s recent speech on cybersecurity emphasised the threat posed by overseas criminals and enemy states, but these figures prove that there is a significant problem in his own back yard,” chides Sophos senior technology consultant Graham Cluley. “If America could clean up its compromised PCs it would be a considerable benefit.”

In contrast, Russia, a former spam ‘super-power’, continues to fall down the Sophos rankings. Russia occupies ninth position in the chart, relaying 3.2 per cent of spam messages: this represents a significant reduction compared to Q2/2008, when the country came second only to the United States, and was responsible for relaying 7.5 per cent of all spam emails.

Poland has seen the biggest single increase in spam output since the last quarter, moving up from tenth to sixth place in Sophos’s spam ‘dirty dozen’, with the country now responsible for relaying 4.2 per cent of the world’s electronic junk messages.  Colombia is the only nation to have left the ‘Dirty Dozen’ since Q1/2009, with Vietnam a new entry this quarter.

The results in full are:

  1. United States - 15.6 per cent.
  2. Brazil - 11.1 per cent.
  3. Turkey - 5.2 per cent.
  4. India - 5.0 per cent.
  5. South Korea - 4.7 per cent.
  6. Poland - 4.2 per cent.
  7. China (inc. Hong Kong) - 4.1 per cent.
  8. Spain - 3.4 per cent.
  9. Russia - 3.2 per cent.
  10. Italy - 2.8 per cent.
  11. Argentina - 2.5 per cent.
  12. Vietnam - 2.3 per cent.
  13. Other - 35.9 per cent.

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