Spam levels have not been dented by a series of strikes against controllers of networks of hijacked computers. Early 2010 has seen four such networks, or botnets, tackled via arrests, net access cutoffs and by infiltrating command systems. The successes have not inconvenienced hi-tech criminals who found other routes to send spam, say experts. And, they add, despite falling response rates, spam remains too lucrative for criminals to abandon.
"Most non-commercial spam these days is aimed solely to get you to click on a link, even out of curiosity," he said. "As soon as you click on that link, you're infected, most likely to become yet another botnet victim, have your identity and information stolen and go on to participate, all unknowingly in the infection of further victims."