Consider some numbers: Nortel Networks indicates that 70 percent to 80 percent of the e-mail that they receive each day is spam, and the rate of spam doubles every 4 to 6 weeks. This costs them about $1,000 to $5,000 per day. Aristotle Inc., a small ISP in Little Rock, Arkansas, indicated that spam costs the company $5 per customer per year. The annual cost to pay for new technology and manpower to manage the spam problem comes to $112,000 a year just for that ISP.
A report by London-based security firm mi2G shows that spam caused more economic damage than hackers and viruses in October 2003. The report goes on to say that spam caused $10.4 billion in economic losses worldwide, whereas viruses and worms caused $8.4 billion in losses, and hackers $1 billion in losses. Not only have spammers been filling the inboxes of corporations, they have also started attacking operators of spam block lists, which are providers that assist companies with detecting unsolicited e-mail. Spammers are flooding servers of the block list operators with spam attacks, forcing them to shut down. This is leading to increased costs to acquire more bandwidth and protection, costs that will probably have to be passed along to customers.
Next section: Spam litigation