Frustrated IT bosses claim the never-ending waves of spam hitting inboxes and the lack of any imminent solution to the problem is undermining the effectiveness of email as a useful communication tool.

In the latest CIO Jury, two-thirds (eight) IT execs said not only are they sick of spam but that many of the filtering tools are not effective.

Bill Gibbons, CIO at Abbey Group, said corporates now have to be “as fleet of foot” as the ISPs in trying to fight the problem.

“Spam should not be allowed to undermine the freedoms of email we have all grown so used to,” he said.

Rob Neil, head of ICT services at Ashford Borough Council said email is in danger of becoming a victim of its own success while Steve Ritchie, CIO at Investcorp, said the problem is twofold.

“Firstly the sheer volume of unwanted email clogs networks and mailboxes making people increasingly frustrated with email systems,” he said. “Secondly, while there are many very effective tools available to curb the flow of spam, they are not perfect. Without a degree of human intervention in order to ensure that ‘false positives’ are not deleted with the real spam, users would quickly lose confidence in email systems.”

But he admitted the idea of ditching email is “not conceivable” and that spammers will continue to hammer away at corporate networks.

A third of the jury (four), however, denied that spam is threatening the usefulness of email. Hugo Smith, IT director at Sporting Index, said stopping junk email is “not rocket science” any more.

“Every company should have something in place as nearly 50 per cent of all mail that hits our domain is classed as spam. The remainder of unsolicited mail that is vaguely business related occasionally delivers something of genuine value and is easily moved into a