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Calling In Sick

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

As we enter the storm season, a time of year that brings more computers up our steps than any other, a new study claims that computers are out sick more than the people who use then. Specifically, the study found that the average British worker was out only seven days a year as opposed to the average PC, which was out nine. Six of those days are spent battling spam; three for viruses. Unfortunately, those numbers are suspect since they don't seem to account for hardware and other types of failures.

There's a quote in the article that would be funny if it weren't so sad. One gentleman, a marketing director of a company that produces spam filtering software (alarm bells should be going off) says ISPs "never have done much about spam and all the indications are that they are lethargic about fighting the problem". Having spent literally thousands of hours and tens of thousands of dollars on anti-spam solutions which we do not charge our customers for, I take exception to that statement.

Regardless, it's good to see this kind of study. People need to know the repercussions of their actions. Responding to spam (apparently 22% of people respond to spam), clicking "Yes" when prompted to install new software over the Internet, and opening unexpected attachments are all sure fire ways to make the situation worse. The next best way is to not have your computer plugged into a surge suppressor or UPS for the next 8 weeks or so.

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