4 reasons why spam is dangerous

Spam, as unsolicited and unwanted messages, may seem a mere annoyance, but it can pose various dangers and risks. Overall, we have about 10,000+ such IoCs in our daily data feed. Here are the top 4 reasons why spam is considered dangerous:

1. Malware and Phishing

Spam emails often contain malicious attachments or links that, when clicked or downloaded, can infect a user's device. These malware payloads can include ransomware, keyloggers, spyware, or other forms of malicious software (for example, botnet malware).

Additionally, spam emails frequently attempt to trick recipients into revealing sensitive information (phishing) by posing as legitimate entities like banks, social media platforms, or online stores. This can lead to identity theft, financial loss, or unauthorized access to personal accounts.

In our TI data feeds, we distinguish between 9 different threat types. If an IoC is associated with Malware, it has threatType = ‘malware’. For Phishing, threatType = ‘phishing’. For Spam, threatType = ‘spam’. An IoC receives threat type = ‘spam’ when the spam activity is not associated with any phishing or malware threat types. It does not necessarily mean that it’s safe and just annoying. We just don’t have information about the other threats associated with it. Thus, ‘spam’ threat types shall also be monitored and flagged.

2. Fraud and Scams

Many spam messages are designed to deceive recipients into participating in fraudulent schemes. These can include advance fee fraud, lottery scams, phishing for personal or financial information, or bogus investment opportunities. Responding to or engaging with such spam messages can lead to financial losses, disclosure of personal information, or falling victim to various fraudulent activities.

They usually don’t have malware payloads, yet are based on different social engineering approaches, therefore, are dangerous.

Users should exercise caution when opening emails from unknown or suspicious sources, avoid clicking links or downloading attachments in unsolicited messages, and regularly update their security software to guard against potential threats.

Solutions like Gmail mark all the messages from outside the organization – so the users pay more attention to such emails. It’s a good practice, and it shall be configured when possible.

3. Overwhelming Inbox and Network Resources

A high volume of spam can flood email inboxes, making it difficult to identify legitimate messages and causing productivity issues. Service desks and customer services are vulnerable to it the most: sometimes, for one legit request from a user, there are tens of spam requests, and it takes resources to crawl through them.

Applying automatic spam filters may result in false positive triggering for legit user requests. Often auto spam filtering is turned off for these systems, and a human has to spend time closing spam tickets.

4. Reputation and Compliance Issues

If a domain or IP address associated with an organization's email infrastructure becomes a source of spam, it can damage its reputation.

Spamming activities may cause legitimate messages to be flagged as spam by email filters, affecting communication with clients, partners, or customers.

Contact Us

Got a technical issue? Want to send feedback about data feeds? Need details about our plans? Let us know. Please note that our service is for registered companies only. Requests from private individuals or emails that don't match the company domain name are ignored.