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Spam’s threat to American businesses continues to grow

In a recent poll conducted by GFI Software, slightly less than half of American business enterprises suffered data-hacks due to junk email. On the other side of the coide, the majority of those polled reported that their email systems’ anti-spam filters were effective, albeit marginally. In terms of specific percentages, the poll indicates that 40% of organizations suffered security breaches due to malware present in spam mail. In terms of security beliefs, the poll revealed that 46% of those enterprises polled believe that the existing anti-spam features included in their current antivirus packages are sufficient in stopping spam emails. Breaking down the 46% above, 20% of these organizations deploy all-time running security applications. 22.5% use some sort of gateway application to protect against spam, and only 7.5% use cloud-based security solutions. Most small to medium-size enterprises (70%) report that their solutions against spam are marginally effective to not effective at all.

The poll also says that 74.5% of responds said their mailboxes get a lot of junk mail. 61% report a rise in junk mail while 25% say that their junk mail levels remained the same in 2011. The greatest concern among poll participants (23%) was the worry that spam mail could carry malware links or files which can compromise the workstations in their networks. The next most common worry focused on phishing attacks that spam mails facilitate. Interestingly enough 14% of the organizations polled did not educate their organizations’ employees regarding the dangers involved with reading spam email.

In summary, the GFI poll indicates that the problem of spam isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Indeed, the stakes continue to get higher as more and more businesses become aware of the threat posed by spammed malware or spammed attack site links. The poll’s finding indicates that there is very little redundant protection systems in place regarding spam attacks. While some organizations consider their current security systems as ineffective or inadequate, there isn’t any alternative or multi layer security plans in the works.