5 ways to stop spam from reaching your mail box

Written By: Joel Teo

5 ways to stop spam from reaching your mail box

By Joel Teo 2005 All Rights Reserved


UCE or unsolicited commercial email is getting worse by the
day and Microsoft has announced that in the future it will
be developing a system in which email sending and receiving
will be like our postal mail where a digital stamp has to be
bought to send it. But until then marketers online will be
continuing to send emails to potential customers in the hope
of converting some of the leads that they buy into buying

The internet arena of emailing is a murky one in which your
email might be traded and sold in some internet networks
which I have seen sell and trade in email contacts online.
That is the reason why when you get one type of spam email,
you tend to get more of the same type of email as your email
has been sold to a large emailing list which is in turn sold
to marketers to email to.

This article will highlight some ways in which spammers can
get your email address and highlight ways to deal with them.

1.Non Cloaked emails on websites

This is actually one of
the most easy way to get spam. Ive talked to a system
administrator in the office and she expressed surprise at
not knowing about this. Most people start building a website
on free webhosts and then add their email address at the
bottom of the website. While this is good for website
usability which is a separate topic altogether, it allows
unscrupulous people to harvest your email address with
powerful online website crawling programs. What these
programs do is crawl websites and then classify them and
sell the extracted leads to lead vendors. So if your website
is about health, they might classify your extracted email
address as a health lead and sell it to other marketers to
email to you.

The simple solution to this problem is to do email cloaking.
This is usually a simple script which breaks up your email
into two parts when a robot on the internet crawls your
website. But to the normal user who looks at it, the browser
combines it together to show a normal email address. Do a
simple google search for email cloaking script and you
should be able to do this by copying the script into your

So then you prevent spam and at the same time allow people
to continue to contact you.

Another simpler solution which may confound some of your
website users who are not so internet savvy is just to do
use /at/ instead of @. So for instance your email will read
Abc/at/abc.com rather than abc@abc.com. However as
mentioned, if your target audience is older and not so good
with the internet, this may be a problem and prevent them
from contacting you.

2.Spam via cookies or malicious code or programs

Spyware flooding your computer is a real problem. Most
people do not really realize this until they find popups
suddenly appearing when they reach some pages or find that
their starting page has been high jacked by some website.
When you visit a website like Yahoo and log in, a cookie is
deposited into your computer browser to tell Yahoo that you
have logged in to their system. These cookies have short
life spans and self delete when you log out of the system.

However there are some websites that have cookies for the
sole purpose of tracking all email sent into and out of your
computer when the browser is on. It then tracks your name
and email address and sends it secretly to a central server
where it then sells you name and email address to email
lists. Thus some people report an increase in spam after
visiting certain websites and this may be the reason.

Another reason for spam can be attributed to malicious code
which can possibly install itself into your browser without
you knowing it and does the same thing as the cookies in the
above example but on a longer term basis as the cookies
would be deleted when you clear your cookies and cache in
your browser. Some of this malicious code can even do
keyword logging and send your passwords and bank IDs to the
programmer who came up with the code!

The best solution to the problem is to download the Mozilla
Firefox Internet browser which has a built in security
system which prevents such malicious code from being
installed into your web browser without your knowledge and
allows you to clear your cache and cookies easily. I do this
on a constant basis to prevent my email inbox from being
filled with spam.

3.Spyware via free programs installed

Another reason why
there is an increase in spam is that there are third party
spyware that is bundled with free software which is why the
software is free in the first place because the spyware
companies pay the programmer to bundle it with their
software. Always look at the agreement before downloading
any free wallpapers or free programs like weather programs
as there could be a possibility that spyware could be
bundled together with it and flood your email box with spam.

The best solution is to download Spyware Search and Destroy
or Lavasofts Adaware anti-spyware programs to detect and
clear any spyware from your computer. In addition, you might
find that your computer might run faster when you are
connected to the internet as the spyware does take up some
bandwidth in its communication to the central server.

4.Random emails

Some of the more powerful email programs
have the ability to flood servers with permutations of email
addresses. This means that they can basically email anyone
online because they have powerful computers which run
software which blasts emails to all permutations and one of
them may be yours.

The more legitimate marketers will have an opt out link at
the bottom of the email so that you can actually opt out of
the list. On the other hand, some of the real offshore
spammers have servers in China and Russia so when you do
click on the link to opt out, it actually confirms that your
email address is working so ironically sometimes it is best
to just delete spam rather than reply to it.

5.Free offers

Spam is also derived from free offers. When
you signup for some online service, there is thing called
co-registration where they have many boxes for you to tick.
Generally what this means is you are asking the online
service to send your email address and name to an online
marketer who is going to sell it to others to email to.
While this is not spam as you have opted into it, it may
become irritating after a while.

The better solution that I do personally is to create an
email from Yahoo for the sole purpose of free offers so that
I can let that email be flooded with spam. So you can get
the free offer and not face the possibility of deleting 500
spam emails daily in your personal email inbox.

In conclusion, spam can be reduced if you are aware of the
reasons and the ways in which online marketers and spammers
can get your email. Taking an active step today to prevent
them from getting your personal email is a great step
forward to reducing the amount of spam you have in your

About the Author

Joel Teo is a work at home business owner, the owner of several highly
successful money making websites.


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