State of the Spam-ion 2009 Address

Over the last few years I have posted periodic updates on the amount of spam that I receive, to satisfy my curiosity about whether the trend is upwards, and how much so.

Well, the verdict is in, and the problem is indeed continuing to get worse.

April 2009 results

Filtered Mail
330,466 Good Messages
377,296 Spam Messages (53%)
235 Spam Messages Per Day

SpamSieve Accuracy
284 False Positives
1,184 False Negatives (81%)
99.8% Correct

5,193 Good Messages
7,333 Spam Messages (59%)
411,493 Total Words

1,724 Blocklist Rules
9,308 Whitelist Rules

Showing Statistics Since
10/11/2004 11:42


  • The number of spam messages per day has really shot up since the last report (from 74 per day to 235 per day).
  • Spam now accounts for 53% of all mail I receive (up from 24% and bringing me in line with the average for the Internet as a whole).
  • SpamSieve is gradually getting more accurate (99.8% correct, up from 99.6% correct last time) and the number of detected false positives since data collection began (nearly 5 years ago) is still a very respectable 284.

In reality, although the problem is getting much worse, I find myself spending less time looking at spam now than ever. I think this is mostly because I am trusting tools like SpamSieve now to do the right thing; but I am sure that there are definitely some legitimate messages getting lost along the way, drowned out by the ever-growing avalanche of spam.