Joined: 18 September 2004
According to survey released Wednesday, nearly one third, or 17 million, of the nation's instant message users have received some kind of unsolicited message at least once.
The Pew Internet and
American Life Project contacted respondents by phone over a period from
January 13 to February 9. The study, however, did not include those under 18,
which is widely considered the biggest group of IM users.
According to various studies, IM spam, or "spim", is indeed increasing. Data from IMLogic suggests that spim went from practically zero in 2003 to 5 percent of all messages sent in 2004. The group believes this number could rise to 8 to 10 percent by the end of 2005.
The content of spim messages vary, from scams similar to those in spam e-mail to hackers trying to gain access, or to spread viruses. Some spim will even be of a sexual nature.
Both AOL and Microsoft are working on ways to combat spim on their services. For now, users can combat spim by using the feature in both networks' software to restrict who can contact them.
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Joined: 19 January 2005
Joined: 14 November 2004
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