Is spam really profitable?

  JanetO 15:45 05 Dec 2007

Phishing I can understand. There must be enough gullible people for these parisites to con into giving their details. The money-extracting scheme letters from Africa I can understand. Again there must be some profit in it.

But spamming? Maybe I'm being naive but I would have thought that reputable companies wouldn't want to be associated with it, and those that aren't reputable wouldn't get any business anyway or would be closed down.

As far as I can see all spamming does is irritate people.

Mind you there must be some profit in making anti-spamware, but is there really much profit in spamming or do people just do it anyway because it doesn't cost much and it's something to do?

  Earthsea 15:57 05 Dec 2007

If spamming wasn't profitable people wouldn't do it. The sheer number of spams sent out means that even only 0.1% of responses yields a good return. The same is true for browser hijacks which direct users to other sites.

Spam comes from lots of sources, including reputable companies.

  Totally-braindead 16:05 05 Dec 2007

Of course theres profit in it, if there wasn't they wouldn't do it.

Its the same as all the advertising rubbish you get through your door, they do it because it works.

I've often wondered the same thing as you I must admit but it must work because otherwise they wouldn't do it.

  interzone55 16:21 05 Dec 2007

It costs almost nothing to send spam, especially as most spam is sent via compromised PCs.

As literally millions of these emails are sent out, at negligible cost if only a tiny percentage of sad losers respond the spammer gets a pay-off.

Note that you should never click on a spam email - especially the link that says click here to unsubscribe.

Also, the address that the spam came from is almost never the email address of the spammer, it will be a compromised PC.

  Forum Editor 17:09 05 Dec 2007

from spam,which is why people keep on doing it. People respond to spam messages because they (the messages) often hold out the promise of easy money, or increased sexual prowess, or that degree you didn't get at university because you didn't go to university - that kind of thing. Then there are the spam messages that appeal to the greed in us - huge discounts on desirable items.

All of us have our vulnerabilities, and spammers trade on them.

Send out millions of messages, and you'll get some takers - just a tiny percentage of 'hits' is enough to rake in a tidy sum, but of course you run the risk of being detected and traced, and if you are convicted the penalty can be severe. In California you can go to prison for up to three years. In Australia they don't mess about - spammers can be fined up to a million and a half Australian dollars a day, and be forced to pay compensation to their victims.

Here in the UK we adopt a rather wimpish approach - spammers can be fined £5000 on conviction, but taking a spammer to court is a tedious, time-consuming process that can take months and months.

  Forum Editor 18:27 05 Dec 2007

The other side to the human nature coin, as far as your story is concerned, is illustrated by something I heard some years ago. A radio station - I forget which - sent someone into a busy high street with a sign saying 'give me £5 and I'll give you £10' The person was offering genuine £10 notes for £5, but of course there were no takers - everyone was suspicious.

It's a funny old world.

  Legolas 21:18 05 Dec 2007

It must be my age but when I seen the thread title I automatically thought of the meat type of spam something to do with my childhood I suppose ;)

As to your question as the others have said it must pay considering the amount of spam there is
I suppose they wouldn't spent the time and energy if it didn't.

  tried 23:49 05 Dec 2007

Visa card spam is on the go!!On the phone they have you phone No and card details what they will ask is the 3 digit No on the back of the card do not give it to them They will suck your bank account dry!!

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

Elsewhere on IDG sites

Alienware 17 R4 2017 review

Illustrator Sylvain Tegroeg created thousands of intricate line drawings for the mobile game…

Best iPad buying guide 2017

Comment télécharger une application indisponible en France ?