• United States



USA world rankings: #1 for sending spam, #8 for Netflix streaming speeds

Apr 20, 20143 mins
Data and Information SecurityInternet Service ProvidersMicrosoft

Sophos named the US as the worst offender for spam-relaying by volume, but US ISPs only reach eighth-place when it comes to clocking fastest speeds for streaming Netflix.

The U.S. is top dog when it comes to sending spam, but when it comes to streaming Netflix, the U.S. comes in as the eighth fastest nation.

When Sophos named its spam-relaying “Dirty Dozen” for the first quarter of 2014, it pointed out, “Remember that if your country is on the list, we’re not implying that you and your fellow countrymen are spam kings.” Instead, it implies the countries on the list have botnet-infected PCs spewing spam on behalf of the real cybercrooks. The worst spam-relaying nations are the United States in the “countries by volume” category and Belarus for “countries by population.”

The US is spewing 16% of all spam, followed by Spain, Russia, Italy, China, Germany, Japan, France, Argentina, South Korea, Ukraine, and India.

Belarus leads the “Dirty Dozen” list in the “countries by population” category, followed by Uruguay, Israel, Luxembourg, Bulgaria, Taiwan, Spain, Bahamas, Macau, Romania, Macedonia, and Argentina.

Although the US may be a leader when it comes to spitting out the most spam by volume, it’s ranked much lower — at eighth — when it comes to the average megabytes per second (MBps) for Netflix streaming speeds.  

According to ISP Speed Index for March, the fastest speeds for streaming Netflix are:

#1 Netherlands: 3.48 MBps average; 3.71 MBps highest; 3.08 MBps lowest.

#2 Sweden: 3.12 MBps average; 3.49 MBps highest; 2.79 MBps lowest.

#3 Denmark: 3.10 MBps average; 3.48 MBps highest; 2.69 MBps lowest.

#4 Norway: 2.96 MBps average; 3.31 MBps highest; 2.69 MBps lowest.

#5 Finland: 2.86 MBps average; 3.34 MBps highest; 2.76 MBps lowest.

#6 UK: 2.72 MBps average; 2.88 MBps highest; 2.25 MBps lowest.

#7 Uruguay: 2.27 MBps average; 2.27 MBps highest; 2.27 MBps lowest.

#8 USA: 2.21 MBps average; 2.98 MBps highest; .98 MBps  lowest.

#9 Chile: 2.19 MBps average; 2.79 MBps highest; 1.04 MBps lowest.

#10 Brazil: 2.13 MBps average; 3.03 MBps highest; 1.29 MBps lowest.

You might note that even the highest speed for eighth-ranked United States, 2.98 MBps, is slower than the Netherlands slowest 3.08 MBps Netflix connection speed. The top 10 ranked ISPs for Netflix speeds in March are Cablevision – Optimum, Cox, Suddenlink, Charter, Comcast, Time Warner, Bright House, Verizon FIOS, CenturyLink and Windstream.

If you want a bigger picture for a longer period of time, the USA archive of Netflix streaming speeds covers 60 ISPs when the smaller companies are included in the list; at 3.6 MBps Google Fiber ranks at number one; Clearwire ranks at 60 with .98 MBps.

Another potentially interesting tidbit is comparing spamminess with speed. While Sophos looked at the entire first quarter for the worst spammy nations and ISP Speed Index is for March Netflix streaming speeds, the USA and Uruguay ended up in the top 10 on both lists. Sophos listed Uruguay as second worst nation by population for spam-relaying. The ISP Speed Index shows Uruguay as seventh-fastest, with speeds of 2.27 MBps across the board.

Happy Easter! And/or for 4/20, happy 420 National Weed Day.

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ms smith

Ms. Smith (not her real name) is a freelance writer and programmer with a special and somewhat personal interest in IT privacy and security issues. She focuses on the unique challenges of maintaining privacy and security, both for individuals and enterprises. She has worked as a journalist and has also penned many technical papers and guides covering various technologies. Smith is herself a self-described privacy and security freak.