Use These 15 Tips to Fight Spam
Spam, spam and spam. How to avoid spam, how to filter spam, and how to complain about spam are the items on this menu of junk mail fighting tips.
Only the tips most popular with other email users make it to this page, but other can be just as useful:
All Spam Fighting Tips
Spam Filtering Software and Services
01 of 15
Use a Good Anti-Spam Program
Achieve a near spam-free email account by employing one of the great anti-spam tools that filter junk mail using all kinds of clever strategies.
02 of 15
Don’t Open Spam
Don’t open spam messages, as they may include embedded images that will track your usage. The spammer may watch you do it, and that may go down on your permanent please-spam-me-some-more record. Here is how to defeat this tactic.
03 of 15
Do Not Respond to a Spam Email or Buy Something From One
If you ignored the second piece of advice and opened the email, never respond to it. A response is sure proof that your email address is active, and now it can be sold to other spammers. You may be tempted to fire back an angry response, especially if the subject line was believable enough to trick you into opening it. But you must resist the temptation.
Just as bad, you may be tempted to buy something offered by a spam vendor. If you do, you are now part of the problem rather than part of the solution. Plus, how can you trust your credit card or online payment information with a spammer?
04 of 15
Don’t Unsubscribe From Spam
If junk mail that lands in your email inbox contains unsubscription instructions, does it make sense to follow them? Unfortunately, this is a tactic that spammers use to validate an email address. It may simply be better to ignore the spam than to use the unsubscribe link. Another thing to avoid is giving the spammer any further information about yourself if you decide to try the unsubscribe link.
05 of 15
How Long, Complicated Email Addresses Beat Spammers
Spam will, eventually, make it to any mailbox. But you can make it harder for them to use brute force to guess your email address by making it longer and more complicated. If you’re sinking in spam, it may be time to abandon your old email address and start using a more complicated one.
06 of 15
Don’t Use Your Primary Email Address to Sign up for Anything
You never know what might happen to an email address you use to sign up for websites or newsletters. It might be passed on to spammers.
07 of 15
Watch Out for Those Checkboxes
Make sure you don’t opt in for emails you don’t want, and watch out for checkboxes when you submit any form on a website.
08 of 15
Don’t Use Your Email Address When Posting Online
If you don’t have to use your email address when posting or commenting online, don’t. Share it in private messages with those you really want to contact rather than spreading it around as networking tactic. While it used to be a recommendation to add extra character strings to disguise your address when posting it, the spam bots have gotten smarter and this may no longer reduce spam.
09 of 15
Ignore Delivery Failures of Messages You Did Not Send
If you wonder why you are getting delivery failures for messages you know you did not send, the cause may be a worm or a spammer, and it’s probably not on your computer.
10 of 15
How to Report Spam With SpamCop
Complain about spam the right way easily with SpamCop, which does all the analyzing for you and generates a perfect complaint email, too.
11 of 15
How to Stop Spam With Disposable Email Addresses
Once your email address gets in the hands of spammers, you will get spam. Lots of it. Find out how to use disposable email addresses to dispose of spam (and spammers) effectively. If you have a website, you may want to use a disposable email address there as well.
12 of 15
Know the Email Address for Spam Complaints
Complain about spam to the right person. You can usually send a spam complaint to the abuse address of the internet service provider the spammer is using. For example, firstname.lastname@example.org if you received spam from a yahoo.com address. The spammer may be using their own domain or spoofing a domain, so this tactic may not always be effective.
13 of 15
Don’t Use the Junk Mail Flag to Unsubscribe From Spam
The “This is Spam” button is an easy and effective way to get rid of spam, but you should make sure you use it only for spam. Otherwise, bad karma may not be the only unpleasant consequence.
14 of 15
How to Filter Spam Using ISP-supplied Junk Mail Headers
Maybe your Internet Service Provider runs a spam filter that changes messages subtly if it believes they are junk. Here’s how to make use of this simple yet effective line of spam defense.
15 of 15
Don’t Delete Spam Automatically
Make sure you get to see all the mail you want. Spam filters are not perfect, so they may produce false positives and delete legitimate mail.