The high penetration rate of social networks among Asian consumers and the general lack of advanced spam filters for these Web sites will only exacerbate the problem of spam in the region, industry watchers say.
Pranabesh Nath, industry manager for ICT practice in Asia-Pacific at Frost & Sullivan, likened the current situation with spam on social networks to the earlier experience with e-mails, when spamming got worse as more people owned e-mail accounts. Similarly, as the user base for social networks continues to grow, spam will grow in tandem too, he noted.
This is especially so in Asia, which contributes millions of users in social networking sites, noted Eugene Teo, Singapore manager for security response at Symantec. He said such a large user base makes the region the perfect fertile ground for spam via social engineering tactics.
"It's easier to fool someone when they think they're surrounded by friends", Teo said, adding that cybercriminals will increasingly target users in region to distribute spam by exploiting the power and trust of social network connections.
Dan Olds, analyst at The Gabriel Consulting Group, added that while e-mail spam continues to be highly prevalent in Asia, this has become less attractive for spammers due to better spam filtering technology used by consumers and Internet service providers.
As such, spammers are turning their attention to the region's social media space, Olds said. After all, while popular social networks such as Facebook and Twitter have all been trying to fight spam, there remains a general lack of control over user sign ups which allows fake accounts to be easily created and used to circulate spam.
Spammers will go where their targets congregate and look for the lowest hanging fruit, and not only do social networks have a vast number of users, spam filtering technology used by these sites is nowhere as advanced as that of e-mail, he explained.
News 9 months ago