From London comes news that seems alarming, if only we all didn’t realize it pretty much instinctively: 90% of all email traffic is spam. While the natural response is to say “tell me something I don’t know” and move on, if you think about that statistic — 9 out of every 10 emails you get is spam, it really can give you pause.
It’s been increasing a such a rate that some experts are forecasting that within a couple of years, 127% of all email traffic will be spam.
OK, not really, but still, how did we get here? And what’s next?
Of course, it’s all about volume, Volume! VOLUME!! Ever clicked on a spam email,and actually purchased the product? Even once? That’s all it takes.
In the last month alone, there have been 7 billion spam emails. Even more amazing:
About 200 illegal gangs are behind 80 percent of unwanted e-mails, according to Spamhaus, a body that tracks the problem.
200 gangs who are responsible for 5,600,000,000 email messages per month. You do the math.
We’ve all learned to deal with spam in our own ways: white lists, spam filters, corporate firewalls, giving up on email entirely. I pretty much have “public” email mail addresses: the ones that I put out there when I sign up for bulletin boards, etc. and “private” email addresses, for my friends and family. Of course, I spend so much time online that eventually it all gets out there, doesn’t it?
It used to drive me crazy: I would spend wayyy too much time crafting filters; blocking addresses; going crazy. No more. I’ve come to terms with the whole thing. Gmail’s spam filters does a pretty job , and for some reason, it bothers me less to glance at my spam directory every day. Do I wish that these assholes would just shut up and die? Of course, but it’s futile, isn’t it?
Spam has pretty much become just another fact of modern life, neither as annoying nor as dangerous as people while yakking on their cellphones, but just like those people, no amount of laws are ever going to stop it from happening.
As a matter of fact, my guess is that even if nobody ever clicked upon a spam message ever again, the spam would still come. If the spammers themselves stopped making even a penny and closed up shop tomorrow, the spam would sill come. If authorities idenitifed every rogue server, the spam would still come. If every zombie computer was decursed, the spam would still come.
Nothing will stop it: by this point, I’m pretty sure that Spam has pretty much become its own chaotic life force. Like nanobots or Cylons. And given all of the Hoodia, Spam is slim and trim and ready to fight; given all of the Viagra, it’s probably reproducing at an amazing rate. And given all of the stock money, it’s probably a zillionaire.
And it’s coming for you.