Ant writes: "The Red Tape Chronicles reports that just last December (2006), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) published an optimistic state-of-spam report. It cites research indicating spam had leveled off or even dropped during the previous year. It now appears spammers had simply gone back to the drawing board. There's more spam now than ever before. In fact, there's twice as much spam now as opposed to this time last year. And the messages themselves are causing more trouble. About half of all spam sent now is "image spam," containing server-clogging pictures that are up to 10 times the size of traditional text spam. And most image spam is stock-related, pump-and-dump scams which can harm investors who don't even use e-mail. About one-third of all spam is stock spam now. Seen on Digg."