"Spam" has been an Internet buzzword since the dawn of email, but what is it, exactly? Basically, spam mail is a form of junk email, unwanted by the recipient. It commonly is a single message which contains advertisements and is sent to a variety of recipients who never agreed to receive such messages. The most common methods spammers use to build up their email lists include: purchasing lists of addresses, tricking users into handing over their information through fake contests and false freebie offers, or using email-harvesting programs to extract addresses from websites.
There are many reasons to avoid interacting with spam mail, but the some of the truly troubling scenarios include the possibility that you'll be putting yourself at risk for identity theft or allowing an attacker to load viruses and malware onto your computer. In the worst-case scenarios, you could even be charged with crimes you weren't aware you were helping the spammer commit — such as being involved in money laundering or handling stolen items. In most cases when handling a spam message, the best course of action is to simply delete the message immediately.
As a rule of thumb, if you want to avoid spam messages, it is important to remember that if something is too good to be true, then it probably is. This will help you weed out contests and offers that seem iffy.
Although spam mail can be difficult to avoid, you can greatly reduce and even eliminate the amount of spam clogging your inbox by using proper anti-spam software. Thanks to advances in software intelligence, many anti-spam filters are able to automatically learn which messages are legitimate and which are spam with minimal user intervention. In the case that a spam filter misses a spam message, the user simply can flag the message. That causes the filters to adapt to the new threat.
By implementing a proper Internet security protection suite, you can greatly reduce the dangers of spam mail by ensuring it is filtered away from your inbox and other important email folders. Additionally many Internet security softwares provide users with phishing protection, which can help in cases when an email appears to be legitimate but it isn't. Since these emails often ask for bank and other financial credentials, protection against phishing protection is a vital feature in any anti-spam tool.
When shopping for anti-spam software, it pays to pick a solution that is bundled with antivirus protection because some spam messages come laden with viruses and other malware. By using a single software suite, you greatly simplify the process of securing your computer while also improving the reliability of your system. Although anti-spam software is able to divert the messages from your inboxes, having a solid antivirus software program ensures that if you accidentally open a spam message, your computer does not get infected.