Unsolicited email, or "spam", is becoming a major drain for UK business by using up employee time, bandwidth and storage space, according to resarch by MessageLabs.
The UK survey reveals that on average 15% of emails received per day contain spam – about one in seven. It also shows the problem of spam is here to stay, with only a third of email users describing spam as no problem now, and three quarters of respondents predicting that it will be a ‘much’ or ‘somewhat’ bigger problem in the year ahead.
This increase is born out by US research, where spam is already much more of a problem with over half of respondents saying that spam represents 30% of their daily email load – nearly one in three. US trends in IT are often replicated in the UK.
Asked what constitutes spam, 90% of UK respondents said it was promotional/marketing email from someone they didn’t know, 89% that it was an email containing information clearly irrelevant to their work, 81% said it was news/information from someone they didn’t know and 71% considered it to be an email they didn’t request, regardless of content or sender.
Meanwhile only 29% said that a promotional email from an organisation they know is spam, with only 12% saying the same for news/information. Nearly a third defined a mass circulation business email from within the company as spam.
Half of those questioned who had current spam filtering technology in place said that it was ‘ineffective’ or ‘very ineffective’.