Microsoft commissioned a survey of 3,600 internet users across Germany, Italy, Denmark, the UK and The Netherlands, and found that 50% of spam e-mails sent are lottery scams.
In the UK, 20% who received lottery spam opened some messages, with 10% having replied to them. In addition, 13% have clicked on potentially malicious links inside these e-mails.
The survey found that 3% of UK respondents had lost money through such lottery scams over the past 12 months, which is the same as the pan-European average.
Ed Gibson, Microsoft UK chief security advisor, said, "Internet lottery scams are one of the fastest growing areas of cybercrime. The scams are of increasing concern to international law enforcement, offering criminals a low-risk opportunity to steal money from internet users."