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How Can I Fight Spammers?

Links on this page:  Tips for fighting spam | Email Clients that fight spam | Anti-spam companies |


There is no way to stop all spam on the Internet, but you can take steps to greatly reduce the amount of spam you receive.  Here are a few tips:

Tips for fighting spam:

1.  Contact your ISP to find out which anti-spam options are available to you.  You can also read the following pages to learn a little more about fighting spam.

Read and report spammers to them.

2.  Be very careful not to give out your e-mail address at websites, newsgroups or chat rooms.  Your e-mail address will quickly become part of a mailing list and sold to spammers. 

Important:  If you use newsgroups, do not use your real e-mail address; use a bogus e-mail address.

3.  Set up mailbox rules that automatically delete messages that have key words such as "sex, nude, etc." in the message body. Be careful because these mailbox rules will delete all messages even if they're from your friends with innocent content. You can also set up mailbox rules that only accept e-mail from known friends and/or delete e-mails from people that you don't like or know to be spammers.

4.  Never ever buy something promoted in spam.  That just encourages them to spam more.  You can always do a search for the same product on a Website of a legitimate company.

5.  Never reply to spam even if they claim that they will take you off their mailing list. This would just confirm to them that they have a valid address and they will send you more spam.  Also, they will probably sell your e-mail address to other spammers.

FYI:  Many e-mail addresses in spam lists are randomly generated.  By blind luck they hit legitimate e-mail addresses:  yours.  Clicking on a link or replying to the spam indicates to the spammers your e-mail address is valid.  Don't click on any links in e-mail spam and, if possible, don't open the spam.

6.  Never forward chain letters or petitions.  For example, spammers often send out e-mails that are supposedly from a student doing a project for school where they are supposedly trying to see how far they can get throughout the Internet. This is almost always a spammer's ploy to get new e-mail addresses.


E-mail Clients that fight spam:

Many e-mail clients have automatic spam-fighting capabilities.  These e-mail clients will not block all spam, but they will decrease the amount of spam you get.  Below is a list of the most prominent e-mail clients with spam-blocking capabilities.  Each link will take you to a tutorial on enabling and configuring these e-mail clients to fight spam.

E-mail Clients for Windows   E-mail Clients for Macintosh
Eudora 6   Eudora 6
Mozilla Mail   Mozilla Mail
Netscape 7   Netscape 7
Opera Mail   Opera Mail
Outlook 2003    
Pegasus 4.21    
Thunderbird   Thunderbird


Anti-Spam Clients:

Many Anti-virus companies and others now make anti-spam software.  The list below is a short list of the most prominent anti-spam companies:

Norton AntiSpam
McAfee SpamKiller
MailWasher Pro


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