Why do people spam? According to research by F-Secure Corp, spamming can make you rich. Home-loan or financial-related spam rakes in about US$200,000; male-organ enhancer spam gets US$12,500; porn sites account for US$3,000. This is the gross profit for 0.0001 percent of sales in one million emails! The figures are staggering.

Why is spam so menacing and scary to the unwary user? Because spam not only duplicates quickly and intrudes your privacy, it also steals your personal and confidential information. For example, some spam such as Phishing and Trojans trick you into false sites and wait for days for the opportunity to rob you. When you do online banking, you may be shocked to discover that your $50 transaction has become $80. The worrying thing is that Trojans can actually be bought on hacker sites in the Internet.

One reason the worm is so effective and terrifying is because it uses the processing capacity of the PC to churn out more spam, infecting the whole network at a very fast rate. At the same time, it generates a lot of income for the spammers themselves. Can anti-virus stop these worms and spammers? The anti-virus needs to be constantly updated and since anti-virus is a service created by people, it is vulnerable to attack and corruption.

What is the biggest name in spamming? The Storm Worm Gang is the most active gang in spamming right now. Their tactic is to make use of headlines to get Internet users to download the worm. Spammers are constantly changing their tactics to get people to click on attachments. One way is through e-cards. When you download Microsoft Data Access to access the bogus e-card, your computer is compromised and spammers can now steal your personal data. Links to YouTube can lead to bogus websites which download an .exe.file.

Spammers have come up with ways to avoid detection or filters. The use of JPG or GIF images rather than text messages can elude image filters as there are no two images that are the same. The images are randomly produced through colored dots in the background. Spammers even use 3-D images which totally fool image filters. Zip, Portable Document Format, and Forms Data Format can also pull the wool over users’ eyes.

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