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Technical Terms and Abbreviations Glossary: J

Junk Mail


Email spam, also referred to as junk email, is unsolicited messages sent in bulk by email (spamming).

The name comes from Monty Python sketch in which Spam is ubiquitous, unavoidable, and repetitive. Email spam has steadily grown since the early 1990s, and by 2014 was estimated to account for around 90% of total email traffic.

Since the expense of the spam is borne mostly by the recipient, it is effectively postage due advertising. This makes it an excellent example of a negative externality.

The legal definition and status of spam varies from one jurisdiction to another, but nowhere have laws and lawsuits been particularly successful in stemming spam.

Most email spam messages are commercial in nature. Whether commercial or not, many are not only annoying, but also dangerous because they may contain links that lead to phishing web sites or sites that are hosting malware – or include malware as file attachments.

Spammers collect email addresses from chat rooms, websites, customer lists, newsgroups, and viruses that harvest users' address books. These collected email addresses are sometimes also sold to other spammers.

This article is based on the article Email_spam from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia and is licensed under Creative Commons CC-BY-SA 3.0 Unported (short version). A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.

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Keyword list: Books, Chat, Email Spam, Glossary, IT, J, Junk Mail, Spam

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