Nearly one-third of internet users buy from spam

A staggering 29% of internet users say they have attempted to purchase an item from a spam-email, according to a new survey from security company Marshal.

The survey, which used the results from 600 respondents, reveals 29% of users say they have bought a “product” from a spam email. The firm also claims there are around 150 billion spam messages sent each day.

“A common misconception is that ‘regular’ people don’t buy from spam. But, you have to consider the types of products people are buying,” Marshal’s Bradley Anstis wrote in a statement.

“It’s pirated software, knock-off watches, counterfeit designer goods, cheap drugs and prescription medicines, pornography and other adult material. The internet provides convenience and a degree of anonymity to people who want to buy illegal or restricted goods. It is a black market and spam has become a conventional means of advertising to a willing audience of millions of people who are purchasing from spam.

“The other way to look at this situation is from a spammer’s perspective. As a spammer – how do you reach that market without knowing specifically who these people are and with the bare minimum of expense? Easy, send lots of emails to everyone.”

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