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RE: What percentage of the Internet Traffic is junk?

  • From: Steve Gibbard
  • Date: Wed May 05 16:10:01 2004

If a few of you can stop being so pedantic for a second, the definition
looks pretty easy to me: traffic unlikely to be wanted by the recipient.
Presumably, if it's being sent that means somebody wanted to send it, so
the senders' desires are a pretty meaningless metric.

The harder pieces are going to be defining what traffic is unwanted in a
way that scales to large-scale measurement.  Worm traffic is presumably
measurable with Netflow, as are various protocol-types used mainly in DOS
attacks.  Spam is harder to pinpoint by watching raw traffic, but perhaps
comparing the total volume of TCP/25 traffic to the SpamAssassain hit
rates at some representative sample of mail servers could provide some
reasonable numbers there.

So, any of you security types have a list of the protocols that are more
likely to be attack traffic than legitimate?


On Wed, 5 May 2004, Mike Damm wrote:

> Very very very near to, but not quite 100%. Since almost all of the traffic
> on the Internet isn't sourced by or destined for me, I consider it junk.
> Also remember that to a packet kid, that insane flood of packets destined
> for his target is the most important traffic in the world. And to a spammer,
> the very mailings that are making him millions are more important than
> pictures of someone's grandkids.
> I guess my point is junk is a very relative term. A study would need to
> first be done to identify what junk actually is, then measuring it is
> trivial.
>   -Mike
> -----Original Message-----
> From: William B. Norton []
> Sent: Wednesday, May 05, 2004 11:21 AM
> To:
> Subject: What percentage of the Internet Traffic is junk?
> With all the spam, infected e-mails, DOS attacks, ultimately blackholed
> traffic, etc. I wonder if there has been a study that quantifies
> What percentage of the Internet traffic is junk?
> Bill

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