Cisco's 2009 annual report released this Tuesday, December 8, reveals that Brazil surpassed the United States taking over the global leadership in sending spam.
In 2009, Brazilians sent 7.7 trillion spam messages, a number 192.6% higher than the 2.7 trillion reported last year. The largest increase over 2008 though happened in Vietnam, where 2.5 trillion spams circulated this year, a 367,7% increase over the previous year which had 0.5 trillion emails sent.
According to Cisco the growth of this type of advertising is worrisome especially in emerging economies because they presented significant growth and are responsible for 55% of all spam exchanged globally.
Trailing Brazil the United States appears in second place, followed by India, South Korea, Turkey, Vietnam, China, Poland, Russia and Argentina in the list of the ten most spamming countries.
The United States, Turkey, China and Russia recorded lower numbers of spam in 2009 compared to 2008. The biggest drop occurred in Russia (-38.2%).
Patrick Peterson, one of the researchers involved in the study, told Forbes magazine the reason that led Brazil to lead the list.
"Brazil has had a rapid growth of broadband, but their Internet users are not in the habit of using programs such as antivirus, firewalls and other security applications that help reduce the number of spam messages as it happens in the US."
Cisco's State of the Internet 2009 security report noted a growing rise in attacks coming from social media outlets like FaceBook, Myspace and Orkut, which is extremely popular in Brazil.
"I'm not completely surprised to see U.S. falling to number two in the spam stats, but I didn't expect it to happen yet," commented Peterson. "I was really gratified to see the actual spam volume decrease, not just ranking, but we also decreased the amount of spam that is pouring out of the United States."
There were 6.6 trillion spam messages produced in the US, according to Cisco, in 2009, a 20.3% percent decline from the 8.3 trillion messages sent last year.