Spam. We all hate it and I pity the poor computer program that sits there daily spitting out silly emails about why I (a female) need more herbal viagra in my life. It is just frustrating to have to go through and sort out my emails when 60% can be spam on some days.

Yet, don’t despair! There are solutions to removing this form of communication and ensuring that spammers leave us alone. By following a few simple steps you can help deliver a blow to spammers all over the world. And the very first rule is to – Simply not reply. By not replying you can often get registered as a ‘dead source’ and so will be removed from spamming databases. This is far more effective than shooting back an abusive rant about how society has degraded and ‘back in your day!’. These kinds of responses are not read, yet indicate that there is a fish on the other end of the line…and that is all the spammers are after. Calling to their principles is a pointless exercise as the principles and scruples are simply not there. 

Not replying also includes ensuring that you don’t get tempted and click on any links within the email. If the links really are of interest to you then it won’t be spam and the problem is solved right there. However, if you find yourself just following human curiosity and an urge to curb boredom and procrastinate, you have just turned into that little fishy tugging at the end of the line all over again. Sometimes, spammers can even use a false unsubscribe link to alert them that there is a person on the other side of the email. Don’t make it easy.

Spammers use computer programs to trawl websites on the Internet, they look for email addresses to use and abuse, and if your company publishes your email address on their website then unfortunately it’s likely that you’ll receive a bunch of spam. Of course, sometimes it makes sense to have certain email addresses on a company’s website, but maybe it’s time to decide whether it’s necessary in your case.

Don’t forward
 the emails on. Do you remember getting that petition that you signed and that hilarious email from an email address that you don’t know? Well when you forward those emails on to the rest of your address book then you are offering fresh email addresses (including yours) to the spammers.

Don’t post. 
Do you post to a forum, newsgroup or email list? Do you post using your work or home email? If the answer is yes to both of these questions then you should check the forums privacy policy around sharing your information. I know it is so much easier these days to just scroll to the confirm button, but at times it pays to read the full terms and conditions. The other alternatives are to have a false email address if you just need it to join and don’t actually want to receive any emails from the group. Or stop posting all together, an option that is a lot harder in our new digital media society. These types of forums and sites often allow your email address to be publicly available, making it all the easier for the spammers’ programs to find.

Don’t trust chat programs. Spammers also use chat programs to try and get a response. If you respond to a conversation they have started, they then have confirmation that your email is valid, and they can then start to hunt you down and spam you. You should never use your email address as your user-name in any chat program. If your computer service technicians are using up-to-date anti spam software along with the sender policy framework, and you are adhering to these rules, and then spam could almost be eradicated from your mailbox.

Over and out


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