More Fun E-Mail Stats

According to Eudora, I have…

Read only 20 percent of my messages this year. This probably means about 80 percent of my incoming mail is spam.

Received just over 10,000 messages so far this year. Coupled with the above, this means I’ve gotten some 2000 real messages, and about 8000 spams/viruses/other junk. Sadly, that sounds about right.

Sent somewhat more than 1500 messages so far this year.

Kept all sent (non-list) mail and some 6000 incoming messages, for a total of 7631 archived messages this year. Of these, 2703 are not spam, viruses, or other junk. That’s just over one-third.

Replied to 786 of those 2000 real messages. Assuming about half of the messages necessitated no reply in the first place — I subscribe to a few low-volume mailing lists and the like — I’m doing pretty well on getting back to people; you have about an 80 percent chance of getting a reply if you e-mail me.

Received 481 (and counting!) spams in languages (Chinese and Russian) whose alphabets I don’t even understand, much less read. Of these, only 37 have been to an address other than my ATPM address.

Received 1249 spams to addresses at this domain, including Movable Type e-mail notifications of comment spams on this blog. Discounting those 1173 e-mails, that leaves 72. Fifty of these went to two addresses that are fairly heavily distributed. The other 22 went to info@ or sales@, two addresses that were listed on the site until a major revision in June. Interestingly enough, spam to these two addresses stopped completely after July. This proves two things: first, that spammers use scraperbots to great effect, and second, spammers seem to rely on the results of the scraperbots, rather than the success or failure of sending an e-mail, to determine if the address is valid. Mail sent to either address will still go through, but since neither has been listed on the site, the spam has stopped completely. Fascinating!

Most disturbing virus e-mail of the year: one from Commission Junction, to an address given out only for CJ’s internal use. This means someone in that company had a virus infection on a computer that was used to distribute e-mails to their entire client base. Which makes me wonder how safe their other information is.

Microsoft is directly to blame for 1234 e-mails to my ATPM account, 48 to my Reidsrow account, 34 to various accounts at this domain, and 749 to my Binhost account. That’s 2065 e-mails, representing over 60 megabytes of garbage, that could have been prevented if Microsoft knew a hill of beans about security. I don’t have any good way of telling how many unique IPs those e-mails originated from, but I do know this: a handful of individual IPs accounted for at least half of that junk.

E-mail is an incredibly useful tool, but looking at the last 330-odd days’ worth of e-mail really makes me question whether the 80 hours — that’s the equivalent of two full work weeks! — I’ve spent in Eudora this year were worth it.

Spam sucks.

posted by Chris on 04 December 2004 at 0313 in computing


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