U.S. Suddenly Eclipsed in Global Spam Production by Belarus

Belarus has left the United States behind as now it’s the biggest email polluter in the world with more than 12 million spam messages every day.

Belarus, which probably is one of the reasons why most Americans failed their tests on geography, now has a rather dubious claim to fame. Photo: Forward Talent/Flickr

In the past the United States was considered to be number one in the general message volume category. This has been usully connected with the United States’ title of being the number one source of Spam volume for customers as well.

However, in January, researchers from the Gulf Breeze, Fla., Internet-security firm AppRiver said the Eastern European nation was responsible for more than 3 million spam messages every day.

The incredible numer of spam messages which come from the former Soviet republic, which borders Poland and Russia, hit an all-time high on 13 April and have sustained this level since then, reports The Register.

In January, AppRiver security researchers noted that the small country managed to release an average of 3.1 million spam messages per days.
After the spike happened on 13 April, AppRiver reports that it began recording an average of 12.3 million spam messages per day – and moreover, it is still climbing.
” Looking at all the messages coming from Belarus, 99.9% of them are being held as spam messages,” wrote in his blog Jonathan French.

“The actual message content was very slim and simple. Most of the messages just simply contained a link and a few words. Many of the links did not lead to active webpages, with most giving 500 or 404 server errors.”

Jonathan added: “The links that did work lead to pharmacy websites trying to sell drugs to visitors. There was a very small amount of the messages that also lead to websites hosting malware that we were catching.”

As far as reasons for such spam uptick are concerned, researchers can only speculate.

“It may have just been the time for the campaign organizer(s) to start after preparing the machines and systems for this particular campaign,” French told the British tech news site the Register. “It has been ongoing a while and showing no signs of declining.”

The post-Sovietic country, better known as the last holdout of a Stalinist-style regime in Europe, has rarely been mentioned as a major source of spam. However, a quick check with Sophos showed that it had also logged Belarus as the world’s worst spam-relaying country over the last month.

The Eastern European nation now accounts for 16.3 per cent of the world’s spam, compared to 15.1 per cent from the US and 7.45 per cent from the Ukraine. China accounts for 5.78 per cent of the world’s spam-relaying.

Sophos’s data, like the figures which came from AppRiver, look at the locations of abused computers (almost always Trojan-infected zombie drones) rather than the physical location of current spam kingpins.

Overall the United States still comes out number one in total message volume. Since April about 1 billion messages sent from the United States, if compared with only a little over 500 million from Belarus in total. Belarus has just taken over for top country sending in Spam for now.

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