As Long As People Keep Buying, Scams (and Spam) Will Keep On Coming
from the pt-barnum dept
It looks like if anything is going to be able to effectively stop spam, it might be pressure on spammers' profit margins that makes spamming a less attractive line of work. But that still seems a ways off, as long as enough people continue to buy the stuff being sold in spam messages. Spammers know if they can reach a high enough volume, they'll find enough suckers to make it worthwhile. Scareware, too, is a volume business: a new report looked at a recent scam in which users were sent to booby-trapped web sites which said their computers had a virus. They were then directed to a site selling them some $50 "anti-virus" software. While a small percentage of people actually ponied up the cash, enough did to allow the scammers to pay more than $10,000 per day to the people who used SEO techniques on keyword typos to drive marks into the scam. It's easy to say that people shouldn't be so stupid and fall for the scams, but at the same time, perhaps a bigger issue lurks for the legitimate security software industry: if people can't distinguish between legitimate warnings from their products and scams, it could be a problem for them.