Spam scourge overblown, survey suggests

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The spam scourge may have been completely overblown as a business hindrance, if a recent survey by IT marketing firm Silverspan is any guide.

The spam scourge may have been completely overblown as a business hindrance, if a recent survey by IT marketing firm Silverspan is any guide.

Sydney-based Silverspan has just released results from a broadbased Australian IT market opinion poll on broadband, video-conferencing, email, business software and PC upgrades.

Sebastian Rice, managing director at Silverspan, said the so-called deluge of spam seemed to be under control for many people. "Our research shows the real issue for senior managers is the number of work email received each day," he said.

The survey, of 225 end-users in April, found that 34 percent of users got no spam on a daily basis. Just two percent received more than 100 spam messages a day.

Some 40 percent of respondents got between one and nine spam emails each day. Fourteen percent warranted between 10 and 19, and eight percent between 50 and 99, the survey claimed.

Further, 44 percent of respondents did not block website access in any way. Some 45 percent blocked some, while eight percent indicated a usage policy but no technical block. Only two percent reported that world wide web browsing was completely blocked.

Rice said that the real issue seemed to be the sheer bulk of email received by business users. As a result, users should not expect email volumes to decrease significantly in the wake of the Federal Government's anti-spam laws.

Eight percent of workers were found to receive zero to nine emails a day, 15 percent got 10-19 emails, 38 percent 20-49 and 20 percent 50-99 emails daily. Some 19 percent got more than 100 emails every day, the survey found.

IT decision-makers were found to be 2.85 times more likely than finance managers to get more than 50 emails a day. Government sector respondents were the least likely to get more than 50 emails a day, the survey found.

The poll, carried out just as the Federal Government anti-spam laws came into effect, was the fifth in a series of Silverspan surveys tracking attitudes to and use of technology in work environments.

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