“The net effect is that the spammers lose customers and see a decrease in revenue.”
ImageShack’s system is capable of swapping thousands of the spammers’ images for warnings within an hour of them being reported.
The company works with anti-spam groups to identify any files that have been uploaded to its servers and are being used in junk emails, he said.
It then scours its web logs to uncover other images that have been uploaded from the same web address.
This allows it to identify images “not previously reported to the anti-spam communities”, Mr Levin added.
The move was welcomed by Paul Wood, senior analyst at security firm Symantec.cloud.
However, he warned that if image hosting sites are serious about tackling spam, they should consider their registration processes.
“Users often don’t need to register to use these sites – making them highly disposable and open to abuse,” he said.
According to security firm McAfee, the global volume of spam is at its lowest level since 2006.
That follows one of the largest group of spammers, known as Spamit, deciding to cease its activities last August.
Even so, spam accounts for nearly 80 per cent of all email traffic, McAfee reported.