America is the world's spam king

Staff report

America is the undisputed spam-producing capital of the world, according to Lynnfield, Mass.-based antivirus firm Sophos. The company published a report on the top 12 spam-producing countries on its Web site Monday.

The United States

The top 12 spam producers

1. United States, 42.53%
2. South Korea, 15.42%
3. China (& Hong Kong), 11.62%
4. Brazil, 6.17%
5. Canada, 2.91%
6. Japan, 2.87%
7. Germany, 1.28%
8. France, 1.24%
9. Spain, 1.16%
10. United Kingdom, 1.15%
11. Mexico, 0.98%
12. Taiwan, 0.91%
Others, 11.76%

Source: Sophos

remains by far the worst offender, exporting 42.53% of all spam, the report said. "Almost nine months on from the

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Can-Spam legislation and the United States' attempt to clean up its act appears to have had little impact. The U.S. is still, by far, the biggest exporter of spam in the world," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos.

"Canada has made some progress, however, cutting the percentage of the world's junk e-mail sent from the country by over half -- from 6.8% six months ago to 2.9% today." Sophos noted that the most broadband-connected country in the world, South Korea, has consolidated its position as a leading spam producer; almost tripling the percentage of spam originating from its shores since February.

"Spammers are motivated by watching their bank accounts get fatter and fatter, and many have turned to hacking into innocent third-party computers to send their junk e-mails," said Cluley. "Many of the computers sending out spam are likely to have had their broadband Internet connections exploited by remote hackers. Zombie computers -- PCs which have been compromised by hackers or virus writers -- are sending out approximately 40% of the world's spam, all without the apparent knowledge of the user."

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