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Stop Spam the Right Way

There are a lot of ways to keep spam out of your inbox. Simple filtering will work for most users as long as they follow a few simple rules.

1. Never open spam. Just opening spam will often let the sender know your email address is valid. (If your email program has a preview pane, turn it OFF!)

2. Get a separate email address to use for those websites that make you register to see their content. Yahoo mail, Gmail, Hotmail all offer free email addresses. Make one and use it! If your ISP offers Address Guard, take advantage of it and setup throwaway email addresses.

3. If your email address already is spammed to the max, you may just have to get a new one.  Most ISPs offer their customers more than one email account. But even if your ISP only offers one email address you might persuade them to let you change to a new one.

4. If you have a website, use a coded method to add your email address so a 'harvester' can't scoop up the address. (your name<code>@</code>yourisp.com) There are also scripts that can hide your email address if you are using a contact form. You can even use an image file to hide the address from harvesters.

There are many ways to circumvent spam, but if you forget just one and give your address to the wrong place, watch out, the spam will soon start coming again.

Sad to say, many users forward emails 'to everyone they know' and when they forward, your email address goes to 'everyone they know'. Once an email goes off into cyberspace eventually a spammer may get it and now you know what happens. Try educating your family and friends on how to forward an email.

It looks like spam is here to stay, because people still buy from spam email. It is now estimated 90% of all email is spam. How sad is that.

Spam-o-meter