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Hacker Arrests Lead to Less Email Spam

In a recent report, Symantec claims that global spam email traffic went down by 47% over the last three months. Kaspersky Labs on the other hand reports an 81.1% drop for the period of July to September 2010.

The cause for the reported reductions? According to the BBC, the good guys have “scored several notable successes” against the underground organizations behind botnets, networks of computers that have been secretly taken over and directed to send out unsolicited emails. A recent victory involved shutting down up to 30 servers of the Cutwail botnet, believe to be responsible for up to 10% of global spam email.

More notable however are the 100 arrests made worldwide as part of joint efforts between authorities and security firms. There’s still a lot of work to be done however, as Symantec estimates that spam still accounts for around 86.8% of all email traffic.

It seems the worldwide crackdown has genuinely affected the ability of spammers to distribute promises of larger genitalia and easy riches. Yet it’s also clear that those who practice safe computing leave less targets for hackers to hijack.

(Spam pic by janetgalore on Flickr)