Personal computers in Northern Ireland take more sick days than their owners, according to research.
Unwanted mail regularly clogs people's inboxes
The average computer has nine sick days a year, six of which are wasted while their owners battle junk e-mail and three days are lost due to viruses.
By comparison, workers take an average of seven sick days a year.
According to research commissioned by Yahoo, the cost to the UK economy is £6.7bn a year, with 2% of the average worker's wage wasted on spam fighting chores.
It said that 70% of users in Northern Ireland had fallen victim to a computer virus over the past year.
Only 46% were aware that computers get viruses by opening attachments, while only 17% knew that you can get a virus by downloading a file.
The research was commissioned as part of Yahoo's Global Anti Spam Day initiative.
It also indicated that more than three quarters of people in Northern Ireland (79%) deleted any spam they received.
More than half (53%) have asked their ISP or e-mail provider to do something about it and some 16% of users in Northern Ireland still reply to spammers.
The stress of spam has resulted in many becoming "e-mad," or having e-mail affliction distress.
It said some 42% considered the daily chore of dealing with junk e-mails more stressful than the daily traffic jam, while 30% would be willing to exercise five times a week to get rid of spam for good.
According to the centre for stress management, symptoms of e-mad syndrome include twitching in front of the PC, irritability and sleeplessness.
The research also suggested that if Spam takes over a person's e-mails, his or her social lives would suffer.