Post by Neil Schwartzman
agreed. furthermore, and as a result, we have effectively banished
botnet spam and greymail spam to the boondocks.
We have seen a huge increase in spam in other mediums which have less effective filtering.
Exactly. And mail hosters congratulating themselves for blocking 99% of
the spam is so "2000s". Why? This relates to other trends:
First, RELATED TO THIS: There is MUCH more legit mail per user these
days (+more users). The fact that the infrastructure has held up to this
load is amazing. Great things have happened in the infrastructure to
handle the increasing volume. Many professionals "dabbled" in e-mail 10
years ago and would send/receive perhaps 10 (non-newsletter/non-ad)
messages in an entire week... yet are NOW up to 50+ legit
(non-newsletter/non-ad) sent/received messages PER DAY. Furthermore,
they are now EXPECTING a HIGH degree of reliability. That is making FPs
all the more serious. I know many attorneys who will miss a court date
(and their client would lose by default--which is VERY SERIOUS)... if
certain important notices didn't get to their inbox. (which seems crazy
to all of us who know all that is involved with e-mail "behind the
scenes"... sort of like "making sausage")
At the same time, just as Neil said ("a huge increase in spam in other
mediums which have less effective filtering")... while botnet spam is
well-blocked these days... (a) sneaky spam is up over the past decade,
such as snow-shoe spam, (b) and, overlapping with snowshoe spam,
spammers doing things like "list rental" is up---where the spammers
convince themselves that they are doing "permission based marketing"
because the recipient really did fill out a form back in 2004 to enter a
sweepstakes offer, and didn't read the "receive offers from partners"
fine-print. Many marketers think that is a "pen-pal for life"
unbreakable contract, for them and for whoever buys their data. Other
times, lists which originally had permission are "re-purposed" to a
point where the recipient can't "connect the dots" back to the original
signup, AND... (c) hijacked accounts sending spam is up--especially in
the past few months. (+ hijacked web hosting accounts hosting spammer's
pages are way up too in recent months)
So why do I say that... mail hosters congratulating themselves for
blocking 99% of the spam is so "2000s"
Because, at the end of the day, the end user doesn't really care about
the 200 botnet spams an ISP blocked that day. He is bothered by the 4
spams that made it past the filter that day. (whereas, 10 years ago,
that end user would be DELIGHTED to ONLY get 4 spams past the filter in
one day). Across the board, expectations and infrastructure usage is UP.
Way UP! (interestingly, per-user pricing is NOT up. Sure, better
hardware-per-$$ helped... but the anti-spam and mail hosting filtering
industry ALSO did AMAZING things to combat the spam problem, and volume
increases for legit mail, during those years!...often, doing so WITHOUT
increases in profit margins.)
Regarding more recent trends... I think that some spammers have
"regrouped" in the past few months and realized that hijacked resources
is their best way to evade filters... and, unfortunately, they've had
some success with that in recent months.
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