Email Systems Notes Global Deluge of MP3 Spam

October 21, 2007 (PRLEAP.COM) Technology News
Web and email management specialist Email Systems has noted a mass global outbreak of MP3 attachment spam, which began at around 9pm GMT on Wednesday October 17th and has subsequently been responsible for between 7% and 10% of all spam, worldwide.

The emails are appearing in significant volume and are MP3 voice file attachments which promote specific stocks. To date, no virus threat has been found in these messages.

The messages are uncommonly large for spam - even when compared to other types of spam which carry attachments - such as .pdf or image spam. The files average around 85kb but have been captured up to 147Kb in size.

The messages themselves are much larger than "traditional" spam and are even larger than both image spam and PDF spam. Average message size is around 85KB but files have been recorded up to 147KB. The audio lasts around 30 seconds although sound quality is extremely low, at around a 16 kbps bitrate and 11 KHz sample rate.

The majority of messages have no content in the subject line - simply containing either "Fwd:" or "Re:". Some emails do contain the name of the file attachment, which appear to fall into a number of categories, from those that are presented as personal (ie weddingsong.mp3), to citing specific artists or tracks (ie santana.mp3, bspears.mp3, beatles.mp3) or referencing sounds that may appeal to a broad audience (ie coolringtone.mp3, listentothis.mp3). The message contents are largely empty.

Greg Miller, VP Sales & Marketing for Email Systems commented:
"The inflated files sizes and rapid escalation in volume that has characterised this outbreak positions this as a dual threat for unprotected businesses, as it is potentially particularly bandwidth sapping. Once again, this validates the rationale for Email Systems managed services which exist on the internet to provide a buffer between the incoming mail and the email user, ensuring that only the clean filtered email is allowed to hit the network."

Recently awarded the highest possible grading - Check Mark Premium - in an independent evaluation by West Coast Labs and shortlisted for both the Channel Network Awards and Computer Reseller News Awards for 2007, Email Systems manages and monitors the flow of spam and virus infected email messages on behalf of millions of corporate and public sector users across the UK. For more information, visit or call 0870 141 7070.

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About Email Systems:

Email Systems offers a comprehensive range of best-of-breed email and web management and protection services that are available either individually or as a modular package for Enterprise and OEM customers. These include web filtering, archiving, image scanning and encryption, in addition to core anti-spam and anti-virus services. Email Systems' web-based solutions ensure that clients need not download or manage software on their PC or server, offering complete peace of mind with no effort required. Email Systems is continually developing technical partnerships with global market leaders. Email Systems has offices in the United Kingdom, France, Australia, Holland, Hong Kong and Sweden.