Avoiding, Filtering, and Blocking Spam
Spam is unsolicited, unwanted e-mail—junk mail. When you first get an e-mail account, you receive very little spam. The spam starts to f low when you post your e-mail address on the web or sign up for free offers with companies that pass your e-mail address to others. Once your e-mail address lands on a spam list as a legitimate address, the spam is almost impossible to stop. When it comes to spam, an ounce of prevention is worth a kilo of cure. Here are a few tips for preventing spam:
- Don’t use your primary e-mail address to register for anything on or off the web. Get a free e-mail account from Gmail, Yahoo!, or Hotmail and use this disposable e-mail address to register for stuff. If you start receiving too much junk e-mail, you can dump the address and use a different one.
- If you receive a spam message, don’t reply to it. Replying verifies your e-mail address to the spammer and encourages more spam.
- Don’t put your primary e-mail address on the web—for example on your website or blog. Spammers scan the web for e-mail addresses.
PC Supporter Tips
If you’re receiving an overwhelming amount of spam, try the following solutions to slow the flow:
- Log in to your Internet service provider’s website to find out whether it uses a spam blocker and whether you can configure it to make it more aggressive in identifying spam.
- If you have the e-mail account through a hosting provider (a business that hosts your website), log in to your account to find out about available options.
- Purchase and install a spam blocker of your own. You can find plenty of good spam filters/blockers out there, including SPA Mfighter (www.spamfighter.com), ChoiceMail (www.digiportal.com), and Spameater Pro
Most newer e-mail programs offer some sort of spam protection (perhaps in the form of a Junk Mail folder) and enable you to enter settings to make the program more or less aggressive in identifying spam. In addition, you can usually create lists of safe senders and blocked senders and block e-mail from certain domains or countries. Search your e-mail program’s help system for “spam” to determine what, if any, spam protection features are available.
(www.spameaterpro. com), to name a few.
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