Over half of the phishing e-mails targeting British Web banking customers come from spammers based in the United States, according to stats from UK anti-spam outfit ClearMyMail.
According to ClearMyMail 54% of phishing e-mails originate from the US. Spain comes second in the table, but accounts for just 3.8% of phishing e-mails targeting UK customers. Germany follows at 2.9% and Korea at 2.8%.
ClearMyMail is calling on the UK government and Internet service providers (ISPs) to better engage with foreign counterparts to combat phishing attacks.
Whilst ISPs in the UK face tough controls and pressure to prevent spam, some providers around the world leave their mail servers unprotected so anyone can send e-mail through them, says the firm.
ClearMyMail claims that in some cases these firms may be aware that their equipment is being used to spam customers foreign countries but do not stop it as they are being paid.
Dan Field, MD, ClearMyMail, says governments around the world must put more pressure on the banks, ISPs and police forces to tackle phishing.
"To some degree you can understand the lack of a cohesive campaign to prevent this happening in less well developed countries but when you see that USA is top of the poll, and you take into account all the tools at their disposal for ridding the world of these criminals I cannot help but feel disappointed that the Americans are not doing more to prevent this happening," says Field.
Recent research from Consumer Reports suggests that US consumers are also hit hard by online scams with $7 billion lost to viruses, spyware and e-mail phishing scams over the past two years.