October 16, 2008, 6:26 AM — Ferris Research recently predicted that there would be 40 trillion spam messages sent this year. It would seem then, that we have a continuing problem on our hands, especially since spam has morphed from simple, but annoying, advertisements to Trojan horses and links to malware-infected web sites. The focus of spam has changed. Five years ago, spam was designed to sell us something; today, it is designed to steal something from us. Spam is no longer just a cheap tool used by a two-bit marketer to peddle get-rich-quick schemes; it is now used by organized criminals in pump-and-dump stock schemes, to sell illegal goods, or to steal passwords and account numbers.
Wasnâ€™t there supposed to be legislation to help eliminate spam? Remember the CAN-SPAM Act? It didnâ€™t seem to have done its job. Oh, yes, it did make spamming illegal, and there have been a few high-profile cases. Some heads have rolled. But the spamming continues unabated, and in fact, has increased tenfold over the past five years since the Act was first passed. This week, Network World ran a review of the CAN-SPAM Act and what went wrong, noting that when the bill was passed, 45 percent of emails were spam. This outrageous number triggered the passage of the CAN-SPAM Act. Yet today, 97 percent of emails are spam, and there were 164 billion spam messages sent during the month of August. Read the rest of this article>>