You Can Protect Yourself From Unwanted Email

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by Magic347, Jul 1, 2003.

  1. Magic347

    Magic347 Guest

    Well meaning people are constantly being used unwittingly by the
    misuse of email. They, along with unsuspecting server administrators,
    are forced to pay the price for the deluge of email designed to sell a
    product or to just bring down servers. For example, the FTC, Federal
    Trade Commission, has received over 25 million emails complaining about
    Madalyn O’Hair’s petition to ban religious programming like “Touched by
    an Angle”. Madalyn has been missing and presumed dead for years and
    there was never a petition by her or anyone else to ban religious
    programming. In addition most, if not all unsolicited email requesting
    money contains a false header, the information designed to let you know
    who actually sent the email.

    There are at least 2 types of Spam or Viruses that may not be
    apparent when you receive them. The first are emails like the example
    in the first paragraph that request your action, usually to send out
    more email. The second is a virus warning about a virus that does not
    exist. The one thing they all have in common is the request to send out
    email to a certain number of people or to everyone you know. Sending
    out email is not like sending out snail mail via the post office. Your
    email can be forwarded indefinitely as the numbers can easily
    exponentiate as each new person who receives it, sends it to all those
    on their mailing list.

    So how can a person protect themselves from this type of
    misrepresentation? The answer lies in using good judgment in protecting
    yourself & your friends by following the 4 basic e-mail rules that
    follow. Feel free to pass this on if you'd like, but take the time to
    delete any header information at the top when you forward it. Be
    responsible. The people you care about are depending on you.

    1. Never pass on e-mail that makes a request for you to send it to
    everyone you know. It's almost always a hoax or a way to promote a web
    site or just plain irresponsible. If you feel you need to send it on,
    take the time to search for verification first. Even a legitimate
    request for help, is inappropriate as unlike regular mail, email is
    usually forwarded and can be propagated forever, long after a need is
    met. I have not found one of these request that did not take me to a web
    site that tried to get me to sign up or wasn't just a hoax, including
    helping to find lost children and granting a dying child a wish.
    Legitimate sponsors of these charities use more responsible methods of

    2. Never buy or respond to an unsolicited e-mail regardless of how
    interesting it appears. It's almost always from someone who is trying to
    get your money without showing themselves or giving you a way to contact
    them. The products are usually worthless and can easily be found via a
    search engine. If your in doubt, try replying to it. You'll find the
    header is a forgery. Even if it contains a web site URL, it can be
    forged, if it has an "@" sign in it. They can even use someone else's
    web URL before the "@" sign which will be ignored by their server and
    take you to their site. For example http:\[email protected] is
    not from a Microsoft web site. "something" is a decimal equivalent of
    the real URL which you will be taken too. "something" is usually
    numbers, but could be letters and numbers mixed. Do you really want to
    do business with someone who is dishonest enough to trick you into
    thinking their sales literature came from some place it didn't? This
    type of sales approach makes you and your friends pay for their
    advertisement. Many of them even bounce their Spam off someone else's
    server, basically stealing their resources and slowing the server up for
    legitimate users. If there is something you want to purchase, use a
    search engine to find legitimate sites and support them. Virtually
    everyone I do business with on the web has a real person on the reply
    end of their requested email.

    3. Never leave a friend’s email on a website, no matter how much you
    think they might want you too. You'll be putting your friend's email on
    a list they may not want to be on. That list could get sold over and
    over sending thousands of unwanted Spam to your friend. Copy the web
    site URL and send it directly to your friend and let them decide if they
    want to register there email. My sister signed me up as someone who was
    interested in getting free software and software books. Ever since, I
    have been harassed by Spam. It's getting to the point were I will have
    to change my email preventing old friends from finding me.

    4. Never put all your friends on copy to any email. There are software
    programs that can harvest all the emails addresses for Spammers. And
    many of the "forward to everyone you know? are sent to help create the
    list. Have you received the one were Microsoft will pay you for address?
    Did you fall for it? You were tricked. Use BBC or Blind Copy instead.
    This will hide their email address from ever one on the list and
    everyone they decide to forward it too. When forwarding a joke or other
    interesting email, be responsible and delete any email addresses that
    are shown at the top of the email text. You might just be helping
    someone who can't afford to pay for downloading a lot of unwanted Spam.

    It doesn’t take a lot of work to defend yourself and your friends
    from unwanted email. Paying attention to and practicing a few simple
    rules can make the difference. Never pass, buy, leave or put. Never
    pass on e-mail that makes a request for you to do so. Never buy or
    respond to an unsolicited e-mail. Never leave a friend’s email on a
    website. Never put all your friends on copy. Following these 4 rules
    will make your email experience a much better one and might keep you
    from having to change your email address because of too much unwanted

    Good Luck Magic347
    Magic347, Jul 1, 2003
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