Spam has become part of our everyday lives, and can be quite annoying. It wastes time and resources. There are steps you can take to limit spam, similar to the way you would treat an annoying or uninvited telemarketing sales call.
How to Reduce Spam
Use an Email Filter
Your online webmail or email client typically will have a built in email junk filter or rules that can be setup. If you have company email, ask your email administrator to help filter unwanted mail through your email client or company’s email firewall.
You might want to keep multiple email addresses for various activities; personal, work, shopping, signing up for coupons, newsletters, etc. Try not to display your email address on public sites and forums, and if you do, use an email address that you do not mind getting spam on. Here are some ways on how to keep your information private and secure.
Be Careful of Where you Submit your Email Address
Check privacy policies before you submit your email address to a website. If the website looks spammy, try to avoid any involvement.
Choose a Unique Email Address
Avoid Email Scams and Follow Best Practices
Avoid email scams, phishing scams, etc. Here is one article describing what to look out for in trying to avoid email scams. Be cautious of opening any attachments or downloading files from emails you receive. Download free software only from sites that you know of and trust.
How to avoid scammed: Always look at the domain to make sure it matches the real website. Sometimes domains might be skewed to look like the real one, so make sure it is is the domain that is supposed to be there. If you are unsure, call the company’s support directly. Do not click links, download files, or open attachments. Never email personal or financial information and beware of links that ask for it. Beware of popups and guard against them and spam. Protect your computer with antivirus, firewall, spam filter, and anti-spyware software. Check your online accounts and statements regularly and change your passwords as a precaution.
How to avoid scammed: Take note that if you didn’t enter, you didn’t win. It is illegal to participate in foreign lotteries via mail/phone in the United States. Also, if you win a lottery, you are not responsible for paying the taxes or fees directly to the government.
Report Spam Email
Forward unwanted or deceptive messages to:
- to the Federal Trade Commission at [email protected] Be sure to include the complete spam email.
- to your email provider
- Gmail: Select the message you’d like to report. Click the spam button in the toolbar above your message list. (If you have the message open, you can also report it as spam by using the same button.)
- Microsoft: Download Microsoft Junk E-mail Reporting Add-in for Microsoft Outlook
- Outlook.com: In Outlook, select the offending message and click the Junk button to report the message in one action; or you may click the arrow next to the Junk button and select:
- Junk for routine junk email.
- Phishing scam for email that is trying to trick you into giving out sensitive personal information like passwords, bank accounts, or your Social Security number.
- My friend’s been hacked! if you suddenly start getting junk email or phishing from a sender you would normally trust.
- Yahoo: Select the email you’re reporting. Click the down arrow next to “Spam.” Click Report a Phishing Scam.
- If you try to unsubscribe from an email list and your request is not honored, file a complaint with the FTC.
Report Phishing Pages
Phishing scams are part of the spammer issue and are sent out by spammers. They enable spammers to gain control of your email account and other accounts to send more spam, steal your identity and perform other destructive behavior. Always look at the domain to make sure it matches the real website.
Report Phishing pages to:
- The website content that the phishing page is trying to portray
- Google: Report Phishing Page
- Federal Trade Commission: Report Phishing Page
- Antiphishing.org: Report Phishing Page
- Symantec: Report Phishing Page
- FBI: Report Phishing Page
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