Image-based Spam on the Rise

by admin July 5, 2006 at 9:07 am

Have you noticed more spam in your inbox lately? You’re not alone.

Among the lead culprits in the spam overflow is a new take on an old technique called image-based spam. By definition, image-based spam contains its unwanted content inside of graphics, making it difficult for some spam filters to identify.

According to a new study from e-mail security vendor IronPort, image-based spam in June of 2006 represents 12 percent of all spam, up from only 1 percent in June of 2005.

Security firm CipherTrust reports an even higher percentage of image-based spam at 15 percent.

“While using images in spam is not a new concept, changing the image in real-time in each delivered spam message is a relatively new capability that the spammers have been able to acquire,” Dmitri Alperovitch, research scientist with CipherTrust told

“This is due to the development and release of the new high-performance software marketed in the underground markets that is able to randomize images in a very high-performance fashion and allow spammers to send millions of them every hour.”

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