Tuesday, January 23, 2007

More Spam anyone?

I won about four milliion dollars today from the UK Sweepstakes International and maybe you will too tomorrow or the next day, butGo to fullsize image of course it is a scam. I have been fortunate up to now in not getting too much stuff but since I have been joining different sites where I have to leave an e-mail address it is cropping up again. Of course it is easy to create a new e-mail but remembering it all. I have a little book with all my current e-mails, five in all for different things.

This was an article I found today at Red Tape Chronicles

The resurgence of spam is generating a lot of attention right now, so here's a quick explanation of what's going on, and what to do about it.

One reason spam is once again clogging up your inbox: Spammers have turned anti-spam technology against us right now. Many Web sites require users to create accounts by typing in a word or scrambled letters that appear in a graphic (and sometimes, that word is too hard to see). That technology is called CAPTCHA, which stands for Completely Automated Public Turing Test to Tell Computers and Humans Apart. Web site designers employ this tedious process because it prevents spammers from creating millions of fake accounts -- it turns out to be a very difficult problem for computers to "read" images.

Frustrated by CAPTCHA, spammers turned the tool on its head. Now, about half of all spam comes as pictures, which are often impossible for computers to distinguish from snapshots of the grandkids. Image spam is the big reason your inbox seems out of control again. Similar to the problem of computer viruses, there is no simple solution for spam. Instead, it's a cat-and-mouse game between the bad guys and the companies trying to send us our e-mail but there are some things you can do to minimize your exposure to spam, and to help the institutions that are fighting it.

The first and most important step: Remove your e-mail address from any Web sites where it appears. Web "scraping" of addresses is still an effective tool for spammers. Don't make their job any easier. If you must post the address, turn it into an image and post that. You might as well use the techniques the spammers use.

Guard your e-mail address like your credit card number. Only give your primary address to people you trust. Create "junk" accounts for newsletters and Web sites that force you to log in with an e-mail address. When they get overrun with spam, discard them.

Also, when at all possible, don't open e-mail from people you don't know. Opening some spam automatically sends a message, sort of like a return receipt, back to the spammer. Now he or she will know you're a live person, and you'll never hear the end of it.


Hootin' Anni said...

I know....it's terrible. I did drop one email just a few weeks ago, because of spamming. Most times I 'make up a fake email' ----it's the pits and bowl of cherries doesn't want anything to do with 'em.

You're added to Bloggers over 50!!! Welcome aboard, hope you can meet new friends that have something in common.

a.k.a. Blandly Urbane said...

SPAM can be annoying, but I just delete them.

Now Spam on the other hand, I enjoy eating - weird stuff, but I like it.

Jeni said...

Don't you just hate SPAM though? I'd managed since getting this e-mail addy about 2 1/2 years ago to have only one piece of spam slide through my ISP's spam protection thing until this past fall when I was checking out some real estate information for a friend in Arizona. The real estate agency was a local one and asked for my e-mail addy so I provided bonafide info - as I needed to have contact with that agency. And, shortly thereafter I began to receive all kinds of SPAM about refinancing, mortgages, buying homes that have been foreclosed, etc. Since that was the ONLY transaction I had made pertaining real estate, my e-mail address had apparently gone on to be sold to spammers. How disgusting is that!

Gene Bach said...

The best advice in that post was to create one "junk" email address and use that for everything except trusted friends. Pretty easy really and it makes a world of difference.

Mike said...

I don't get too much spam. I don't really post to a lot of places anyway. But thanks for the tips :)