Network-Level Characteristics of Spamming: An Empirical Analysis
Has the behavior of spammers changed over the last few years? To answer this question, the authors conduct a study from three recent data sources. Specifically, they focus on the following broad questions: How are email addresses harvested, where is spam coming from, and how does spam evolve over time. First, they discuss whether spammers still use email harvesting: 34% of the honey-pot accounts they publicised received spam after 72 days on average. Interestingly, they find that simple email address obfuscation is quite effective against harvesting. Second, they identify significant skew in the spatial distribution of the origin of spam in both the IP-level and AS-level of granularity.