Buried Under a Mountain of Spam

Written by Michael Southon

For years I didn't worry much about spam.

But lately it's got out of control. Over half of my email is now spam, and it's growing byrepparttar week.

Spam is now such a problem that I know people who have had to close down their domain name. This article offers some tips on how to avoid being buried under a mountain of spam.

--------------------------------------------- How Do They Get Your Address? ---------------------------------------------

Inrepparttar 132781 old days, spammers got their addresses mainly from Newsgroups - if you didn't post to Newsgroups, you were reasonably safe. But they're now using a much more efficient method to build their lists - email harvesters.

Email harvesters are robots that roamrepparttar 132782 Internet collecting email addresses from web pages. Examples are EmailSiphon, Cherry Picker, Web Weasel, Web Bandit and Email Wolf, to name just a few.

How can you protect yourself from email harvesters?

By 'munging' (mung = 'mash until no good') or cloaking your email address.

There are many ways of munging your address -repparttar 132783 easiest technique is to use HTML code forrepparttar 132784 punctuation in your email address (instead of symbols).

Forrepparttar 132785 colon after mailto use : and forrepparttar 132786 @ symbol use @ and forrepparttar 132787 period use .

With this method, my email address would become: mailto:msouthon@freezineweb.com

Your email address will appear exactly as it did before, and it will still be 'clickable', but email harvesters will ignore it and move on.

There are also JavaScript's that you can insert into your web page that will make your email address visible to humans but invisible to harvesting programs. Here's one that works very well: http://pointlessprocess.com/JavaScripts/anti-spam.htm

---------------------------- How To Fight Spam ----------------------------

The most important thing is never, ever, reply to spam.

Most spam contains an innocent-looking 'remove me' email address. Do not use it. Here's why:

Spammers typically buy a CD containing a million or so email addresses, but they have no idea how many of those addresses are active. So before beginning their marketing campaign in earnest, they send out a 'test message' torepparttar 132788 entire list.

The test message contains an email address for removing yourself. When you reply to that address, it confirms torepparttar 132789 spammer that your address is active and therefore worth spamming.

Worse still,repparttar 132790 spammer may be distilling from that CD a list of confirmed active addresses that he will then sell to another spammer.

The key to dealing with spam is to report it to a 3rd party: (1)repparttar 132791 affiliate program thatrepparttar 132792 spammer is advertising, (2)repparttar 132793 spammer's web host, or (3)repparttar 132794 ISPrepparttar 132795 spammer used to connect torepparttar 132796 Internet.

When you report spam to a 3rd party, remember to be polite - they didn't sendrepparttar 132797 spam and they're probably just as anti-spam as you are.

(1) Reporting to Affiliate Programs

Many spammers are affiliates advertising someone else's products or services. So look for a website address that contains an affiliate link, something like this: www.affiliateprogramdomain/841526

Then just send an email torepparttar 132798 affiliate program (abuse@affiliateprogramdomain.com), informing them that you are receiving spam from one of their affiliates.

Most affiliate programs have zero tolerance for spamming and will remove an affiliate spammer without warning.

Now, affiliate spammers don't want you to see their affiliate link, so many of them send their email as HTML. All you see inrepparttar 132799 message arerepparttar 132800 words 'Click Here and Order Now'.

Good Spam or Bad Spam - What's the Difference?

Written by Sara Hardy

"Are you good spam or bad spam?" This isrepparttar question I find echoing in my head sometimes when I am going through my email, as if it is part of some electronic Wizard of Oz. Have you ever given any thought torepparttar 132780 fact that there really is a difference in spam? Not that I am defending anyone, but let me make my point and then you can decide for yourself.

Spam is such a hot issue and no one knowsrepparttar 132781 "right" view of spam that fits everyone. You either: - will take all measures to prevent people from sending it to you - don't mind it at all and happily delete, delete, delete every day - OR hate it sometimes and ignore it other times.

I think I fall inrepparttar 132782 last category, which is what started me thinking about good and bad spam. My point of view has now developed into this:

BAD Spam- -It is bad spam when you reply to it to be removed and it is returned to you becauserepparttar 132783 address is made up. -It is bad spam whenrepparttar 132784 removal link does not open a real url. -It is bad spam when you pasterepparttar 132785 message source into Spam Cop andrepparttar 132786 info you get back before clickingrepparttar 132787 "Send spam report" shows tons of dead ends and made up domains, etc.

This means that this "Cowardly Lion" harvested your address, and went to great lengths to cover their tracks in order not to get caught sending spam.

GOOD Spam- -It is good spam when there is an actual person onrepparttar 132788 other end, apologizing for inconveniencing you.

What made it good spam? Because here is spam that you most likely will not get again, because it is more legit thenrepparttar 132789 bad spam. These people are not out to break any rules, upset anyone, or ruin your day. 9 times out of 10 they really don't know any better and will learn, very quickly I might add.

Also, keep in mind thatrepparttar 132790 Scarecrow in us does not ALWAYS remember every email we sign up for. It is possible to have signed up for something and a week later be flipping out because you are getting email from some unknown. If we only had a brain sometimes (Speaking for myself, of course).

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