Spam emails are sent out in mass quantities by spammers and cyber criminals that are looking to do one or more of the following:
- Make money from the small percentage of recipients that respond to the message
- Run phishing scams – to obtain passwords, credit card numbers, bank account details, and more
- Spread malicious code onto recipients computers
How to protect yourself against spam email and phishing
- Never publish your private email address on publicly accessible online resources.
- If you must publish your private address electronically, try to mask it – in order to avoid having the address picked up by spammers. For example, ‘[email protected]’ is an easy address for spammers to find. Try writing it as ‘Joe-dot-Smith-at-yahoo.com’ instead.
- When you need to publish your private address on a website, it’s safer to do this as a graphics file rather than as a link.
- If your private address is discovered by spammers – you should change it. Although this may be inconvenient, changing your email address will help you to avoid spam.
- Make sure that you use the latest version of your web browser and that all of the latest Internet security patches have been applied.
- Only open email accounts with providers that include spam filtering.