Previously, a spam e-mail would be easy to identify from the many grammatical errors. This is no longer the case however. Nowadays, senders will often use the names of big companies and also copy their e-mail layouts. Follow the tips below to reduce your vulnerability to spam.
Choose your e-mail address wisely
Senders of spam scan the Internet for e-mail addresses to target. They use programs that search for all combinations of short addresses (for example, firstname.lastname@example.org). An e-mail address comprising email@example.com offers you greater protection. But even this is not completely secure: By using common names, senders are able to generate a high hit rate of genuine e-mail addresses. To avoid falling victim to this, we recommend also including the first letters of your middle name in the e-mail address.
Use several e-mail addresses
To reduce the amount of spam you receive, you should use at least two different e-mail addresses; one address that you only give out to trusted contacts and another that you use for competitions, forums and online purchases. For one-time services – such as taking a survey – you can also create a disposable address (e.g.https://jetable.org).
Report spam to the provider
Large providers such as Bluewin filter your e-mails for spam. This spam filter systematically checks all inbound and outbound e-mails for typical spam elements (content that recipients deem unsolicited for example). All suspicious e-mails are automatically sent to the spam folder. If you still receive spam e-mails, you shouldmark them as spam.
Check e-mails before opening
To avoid falling victim to spam, you should give every e-mail a quick once-over before opening:
- Do you know the sender’s name and e-mail address?
- Is the subject meaningful?
- Would you expect an attachment from this sender?
If things do not add up, mark the e-mail as spam and then delete it. By doing this, you are protecting both yourself and other users because, if a large number of recipients flag an e-mail as spam, it will, in the future, be sent directly to the spam folder of all recipients. It is important never to open a link or attachment in a suspected spam e-mail. This is the best way to protect yourself, your computer and your data from harm.
If your e-mails are being treated as spam...
Do your e-mails end up in the recipient’s spam folder by mistake or are they sometimes not even sent at all? This happens if your e-mails are classified as potential spam e-mails due to their content.