Russia Rising (in My Inbox)

The number of Russian-language spams (or at least Cyrillic font) I get has risen dramatically, lately. For a while, I got a lot of Chinese and Korean spams, but now, the Russian stuff reigns supreme, at a bit over 5% of the total.

I’m not sure what this signifies. On the one hand, obviously, a lot of spam still comes from developed countries; a decent chunk of it comes from otherwise legitimate businesses here in the United States with broken unsubscribe forms. On the other hand, tremendous quantities originate from hijacked (or spam-dedicated) servers in underdeveloped countries. See this real-time map of spammer IPs (don’t you love Google Maps?) for a global breakdown of spam detected by SpamShield. I think what it means is this: Russia’s economic incentives and Russian technological infrastructure are finally coming of age; people finally have both the ability and the incentives to sell me garbage, in their language.

On the one hand, the economic development implied is a good thing. On the other, it also means my daily spam total is at or above the 1,000 mark for the sixth month running (it’s actually well over 1,100, but who’s counting?).

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