Report: Israelis report election spam

March 29, 2006

Israelis receive a lot of spam e-mail, but in the month leading up to Tuesday's general elections the amount spiked due to political messages.

The Israeli anti-spam company COMMTOUCH said that during the month of March, 59 percent of messages reaching the average Israeli's inbox were junk mail, according to a report on the Hebrew news Web site Ynet.

Of the spam messages, 36 percent were political, COMMTOUCH said, and the majority of those came from the Labor Party and the Shinui Party, the site said.

Labor ended up winning 20 seats in the 120-seat Knesset on Tuesday, while Shinui, once a significant force in Israeli politics, failed this year to clear the vote threshold required to enter the Knesset at all.

A large chunk of the spam -- 56 percent -- was shopping related. Of this portion, a full 30 percent was dedicated to shopping for the upcoming Passover holiday in Israel, the news site said.

COMMTOUCH's research results showed that the worldwide average among 130 countries was 46.4 percent spam in the inbox, but some users reported that as much as 71.5 percent of their e-mail was junk, the site said.

Though Israelis suffer a particularly high spamming rate, much of the junk content actually comes from the United States, the news site said -- 43.7 percent of it. Another 13.6 percent of the spam comes from China, while Germany, Korea, France and Britain each send between 2 percent and 3 percent of Israelis' junk mail, according to the news site.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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