Where Does Spam Come From?

by Mike McEvoy on August 24, 2010


Spam impacts everyone in one way or another. Have you ever found yourself wondering where does spam actually come from?  Where in the world does spam originate prior to clogging up your email Inbox or your computer?

I recently came across interesting spam information from ICSA Labs, an independent testing organization that produces a weekly report on the Top 10 Countries Sending Spam. Their reports list the countries where spam originates during a given week and how the volume of spam from each country varies over time.

Top Countries Where Spam Comes From

The ICSA Labs table below shows India, Russia, Brazil and the United States the top four countries where spam originated during the weeks of August 9-15, 2010 and August 16-22, 2010. These four countries accounted for approximately 35% – 37% of all spam that ICSA Labs tracked, indicating that spam generation is fairly dispersed geographically. The top ten countries in these lists account for less than 60% of all spam sent.

Spam Origins Over Time

Another chart from ICSA Labs shows takes the weekly spam data from January 2010 through August 2010 and illustrates the fluctuations in where spam comes from over a longer period of time. While Ukraine and South Korea have remained relatively consistent as sources for the origination of spam, the volume of spam coming from Brazil, Russia, India and the Unites States has varied much more dramatically.

In the end, this information doesn’t necessarily decrease your volume of spam or make you any more protected against spam. However it does provide some perspective on the global nature of spam and the importance of having technology in place to block and filter spam to minimize the problems it can cause. Plus now you will be better able to answer the question of “where does spam come from.”

You can find additional spam reports and information at ICSA Labs.



Janet Zagoria September 7, 2010 at 2:09 pm

Great info. I posted this and your blog to the NBIS list. Hopefully you are still getting email from NBIS so you can see what I wrote. If not, go to:

Cheryl September 7, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Excellent article! Spam drives me NUTZO!

Peter Stevens November 3, 2010 at 4:36 pm

Great article, its good to see an analysis of where all the Spam is coming from. The country rankings for spam sources came as a bit of a surprise, I didnt expec to see the USA so high up the listings.

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