India has surpassed the United States in becoming the country which is responsible for sending the most spam on the planet.
One out of every six junk emails that users receive are coming from India, according to a new report conducted by SophosLabs.
Its third-quarter "Dirty Dozen" report of countries who spew out the most spam found that India increased its percentage of global spam for the third quarter in a row. The country now accounts for 16.1 percent of all junk e-mails generated.
SophosLabs stressed that the spam doesn't necessarily stem directly from India-based computers. Instead, it's delivered from "ill-protected machines" that "have been turned into spam-spitting zombies in botnets."
"The latest Dirty Dozen report suggests that a not insignificant number of PCs in India are harbouring malware infections that turn PCs into spam-spitting zombie slaves, controlled by the cybercriminals who make money by punting junk emails to promote questionable goods, or simply use malicious spam to infect more computers," said SophosLabs. "The authorities in India need to make IT security education a priority. One would be safe to assume that, if computer users in the country are being targeted in order to relay spam, they are likely victims of other online threats such as fraud."
Sophos added that 5.3 percent of the world's internet users are from India, which makes it the third most connected country after the U.S. and China. However, just 10.2 percent of the population has internet access. Due to this, Sophos suggests that it's one of the possible reasons relating to the lack of security measures for the region's systems.
The United States had previously been the top spamming country for several years before it was overtaken by India back in April.