Happy birthday to you SPAM! :/
Yes folks. SPAM will be 30 years old tomorrow (3rd May), as reported by The Register!
Junk mail has been littering our email boxes and all of the Internets for 30 long years now, annoying you with the infamous buy XYZ products, specially viagra, and the enlargement of a certain organ in the male body among many other things. In the past, cleaning the clutter was a whole new level of pain and boredom, where you thought of all particularly painful and abusive torture you could inflict on the spammers, while cleaning your inbox. Today, that task is mostly handled by spam filters.
So… to commemorate the 30 years of that monstrosity called spam, let’s see some ways to fight it, so it doesn’t make it to its 40th birthday! :/
So, here’s my top 10 ways to fight off spam.
#10: Keep multiple email addresses. One for your Personal/Official needs and one for the “unsure and obscure” needs. For that one, do not put your real name. Use something like “email@example.com“. If you are paranoid, keep multiple spam-emails (like 3 of them). Use different ones for different websites. Then you can easily track which websites sold you out.
#9: NEVER reply to spam or even open them or click links inside spam emails. This only confirms your address, and for them, this means you are interested in them. Meaning? More spam! Not just for you, for everybody else. If everybody just delete their spam mails without doing anything like clicking their links, maybe spammers will get discouraged. Maybe.
#8: Be careful about giving out your email addresses (or even physical addresses) online. Not only online. Do not put your official address in surveys and the likes, even in real life. I’ve got a nasty experience with that.
#6: Do not post your email address (your personal or official ones) on mailing lists and forums. Use one of your spam-emails for that. For trusted lists and forums, you could use your official email.
#5: Do not post your email on any porn-related site or mailing-list. Ever. These ensure guaranteed spam.
#4: Do not post your address on sites directly. Like in forum post, or blog comments. Spam harvesters / Address crawlers get these addresses easily. Use a format like “myname [at] myprovider [dot] com” or something similar. You can be creative here. You could have used something like “firstname.lastname@example.org” then tell people “remove that ‘_12345’ when you email me“.
#3: Take time and customize your spam filters in your email inbox. Block spamming domains, or even block out everybody except those on your contact list for maximum security.
#2: Use a disposable email service if you are really lazy to go create spam-emails. These allow you to create a temporary email inbox. Specially useful if you need those “activation” emails for an untrusted site. Created a temporary inbox, register, use your temporary address, go to your temporary inbox and activate, and after a while, the inbox will be deleted. No risk of seeing spam landing in your official inbox then.
#1: Report spam emails! Most email providers offer this feature nowadays. Use it, and help fight spam!
That’s my top 10 methods. If you got more methods, and would like to share, the comments box is available. 🙂