OECD claims developing world easy spam prey

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Spam is hurting developing countries more than their industrialized partners, according to a new report.

The report, by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) claims developing countries cannot afford the education and bandwidth to deal with the onslaught of spam.

"Spam is a much more serious issue in developing countries than in OECD countries," said Suresh Ramasubramanian, consultant at the OECD, who prepared the report. "As it is a heavy drain on resources that are scarcer and costlier in developing countries than elsewhere."

A recent OECD Task Force on spam realized, during a meeting with non-member countries in July 2004, that spam and net abuse were hitting developing countries particularly hard. The consequent investigation and report reveals the extent of that effect.

One of the major problems highlighted was a lack of bandwidth in developing nations. Without the correct infrastructure large-scale spam attacks are capable bringing a whole country's networks to a crawl.

"High volumes of incoming and outgoing spam are a severe drain on the meagre available bandwidth," said the report. "And therefore impact developing countries relatively more than would be the case for similar volumes of spam in developed countries."

The report also states that a lack of user education within developing countries leave them more vulnerable to phishing attacks and other forms of social engineering.

In May SC reported how one large credit card company was working to close down nearly one-and-a-half thousand phishing sites to combat the growing threat posed by phishing spam.

OECD report

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