back to article Spam regains pre-McColo reach

If you've noticed a spike in the amount of spam you're receiving, you're not alone. According to an analysis by Google, the volume of junk mail has returned to levels not seen since November, when host provider McColo was disconnected. By the second half of March, spam volumes returned to pre-McColo takedown levels, according …


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  1. Mark Daniels
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    Pot and Kettle.....

    The irony....

    Google are the purveyors of junk mail with their gmail service, skimming email addresses and targetting them for ad's. And, as immortialised by Labour and so successfully fulfilled, things can only get worse......


  2. Nigel
    Thumb Up

    @Mark - don't be silly!

    Don't be silly (or if that's an April fool flamebait, it's not nearly silly enough). Gmail is a service that you choose to use. If you don't like getting targeted adverts, just don't sign up, and you won't.

    And what' s infuriating about spam is that it is *not* targetted, it's a shotgun with a billion pellets (often poisoned pellets). If I get a limited number of adverts that are actually relevant to what I am interested in (and only those), it's at worst harmless and at best somewhat helpful.

  3. Tim


    Based on my email addys, I feel the level has only reached maybe 25% of pre-McColo levels, presumably this indicates the spammers are using different mailing address lists; implies it may be different spammers.

    I couldn't see any indication of the source of the spam now in the article, but are we going to have to wait for the Washington Post to publish another identifying article before the US webhosts will take this lot down?


  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Mail settings

    I have set my Yahoo! Mail to delete all Spam immediately, so only see two to three Spams per day. Mind you, I turned off the filter for a few days & got >100 per day! :-(

  5. Cris Page

    Gmail is the spammers preferred service!

    As a forum Admin, I can honestly say that at least 70% of our attempted registrations by spammers come from Gmail addresses. Maybe Google should look at who is using their mail services... and for what?

  6. Mark Daniels
    Thumb Down


    Nope, not an Apple Dig, this time.

    I agree, for Gmail it is opt in, for the those tghat have Gmail.

    However, a few people I know do have G Mail accounts and I am prepared to stake a large chunk of my prof' reputation on the following :

    Google not only do scan the content of email for 'advertising opportunities' but also scan for the email address of those int he 'to' or 'cc' lists of emails, coming in or out.

    Since a collewague fo mine started using a Gmail account, and sending 'stuff'' to my work address, the amount of crud that is hitting my work email has gone up ten fold. To the point where I have set up filteres on my work email to auto bin anything with @hotmail or @gmail.

    This is not a 1 April thing either......

  7. The Fuzzy Wotnot
    Thumb Up

    All in the name!

    I have several email addresses on two domains.

    I set up a brand new email address with a simple stub, using just letters and sent a couple of emails to sign up to news websites. I set up another email address using a bizarre combination of random letters and numbers, no more than 10 characters though. Signed up to the same websites.

    Within 7 days the first simple email was being hit by about 10-15 spams a day, the other got 1 in week.

    Lesson I learned, use a mashup of numbers and letters, seems to keep you clear for a while. As an added precaution I usually change my important email addresses every 6 months anyway, just to be safe.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Patently obvious innit!!

    "It's difficult to ascertain exactly how spammers have rebuilt in the wake of McColo,"

    Well, when you consider every time a new machine bought by proles at PeeCee World is connected to that interweb thing, chances are it will be infected and becomes a spambot within about 30 minutes is quite high, considering the Windows OS bears more than a passing resemblance to a sieve. The click happy prole will install just about anything so they can get their google, yahoo and any other such crapware toolbar on their Internet exploder browser!

    Expecting to get burnt for this comment.

  9. Stephen Baines

    Yeah, spam is definitely up

    Grrr. Checking the logs, my domain that's over 12 years old got 12 952 spams yesterday and 35 real ones, the one that's 9 years old got 4 965 spams and 16 real ones. If it wasn't for tight filtering, those domains would be useless to me today for mail. Across all my domains it's a staggering 98,02 % spam.

    Email's dead.

  10. Eddie Johnson

    Its not just with the email

    I noticed a corresponding fall then rise with Usenet spam. In January and February the newsgroups were obviously much cleaner, especially with regard to a handful of the most prolific porn spammers.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    1.2% per day?

    "the growth rate during the first quarter of this year, at 1.2 percent per day, was the highest it's been since early 2008."

    Where does that figure come from? A rate of 1.2% per day for a quarter (90 days) would mean an increase of (... and carry the seven...) 192% on the period.

    Elsewhere in the article, the figure is "80% of pre-McColo takedown levels" in late January (admittedly from a different company) and back to pre-McColo takedown levels today. That's an increase of only 25% on the period.

    Maybe spammers take a break over Christmas, so that the 1.2% per day average since the start of the year is hugely front-loaded in January, and consists of the spammers recovering from festive hangovers more than from the loss of McColo.

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