Wednesday 11 April 2007

IDC's Spam Stats are Conservative?

Mark Levitt

Mark Levitt is the "Program VP for Collaborative Computing and the Enterprise Workplace" at IDC. His name is on a new report that includes some stats that have raised a few eyebrows.

Ars's Nate Anderson said:

New research from IDC claims that this will be the year in which spam outnumbers person-to-person e-mail for the first time.

Huh? Don't we hear from anti-spam vendors all the time that spam is 60, 70, 80, 99% of all email? Is Levitt living in a timewarp?

Well, reading between the lines of IDC's press release, it seems to me that we're comparing apples with oranges. I think Mark is including the number of legitimate messages that stay inside an organization. This is typically a whole lot more than the amount that comes in from outside. It might easily double the number of messages a user receives.

According to my latest estimates, an "average" email user (whatever one of those is) receives around 40 spam messages per day and 15 legitimate. Me? I get more like 500 spams/day, but that's including several spamtraps.

I love Brad Linder's comment:

Spam filters are a lot better than they used to be, so really what this means is that nefarious companies will continue to send messages that nobody will read this year.

Oh yeah, and the Ars story got dugg, too...

[Hat tip: Techmeme]

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