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 day and Microsoft has announced that in 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 hope of converting some of leads that they buy into buying customers.
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 reason why when you get one type of spam email, you tend to get more of 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 most easy way to get spam. I’ve talked to a system administrator in 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 bottom of 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 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 internet crawls your website. But to normal user who looks at it, 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 script into your website.
So then you prevent spam and at 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 email@example.com. However as mentioned, if your target audience is older and not so good with 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 system.
However there are some websites that have cookies for sole purpose of tracking all email sent into and out of your computer when 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 reason.