Spam is definitely down. At least: spam via email. There were several stories about this last year but as a subject nobody really reports about it anymore. They now only report about major losses due to hacking (banks, credit cards, retail operations, etc.) or scams.
From my own perspective my email spam is now 98% Nigerian scam and 2% phishing with really nothing else coming in to either the spam filtered inbox or any other inbox. It actually means my email is useful as a communications medium again.
But if you want to test things out, try this:
- Create a brand new account on Yahoo Mail. (Specifically.)
- Do nothing with it and don't share it with anyone.
- Wait 2 months
- Check that address.
Dollars to donuts you will have spam in it. Usually the most ridiculous automatically-produced pill spam.
If you create an account with a female name in the username portion, within four months you will begin receiving dating spam.
I've been able to repeat this a few times. Whoever is spamming these new, empty, unused addresses is gaining access to lists of newly-created accounts from Yahoo Mail somehow. That or doing some kind of MX scanning to verify active accounts using some sequential "brute force" means.
Yahoo is the absolute worst.
SiL / iks / concerned citizen
P.S. Forum spam appears to be down except for mostly Chinese-based counterfeit spammers. But even their volume of registrations is way down from their peak three years ago.