Spam, spam, go away
Written by a NortonLifeLock employee
Spam. In some ways, it's the electronic equivalent of junk mail and junk phone calls. Spam is not only an unsolicited and annoying nuisance, it's also a pervasive problem that's clogging and overwhelming the Internet's email systems. Spam accounts for approximately 80 percent of worldwide email volume.
Isn't it time to upgrade your security?
Upgrading to new devices and software can often mean downgrading your privacy and security. It’s time to take your security seriously. Download the full version of Norton Security Deluxe free for 30 days, and test-drive it on up to 5 of your devices – PCs, Macs, smartphones or tablets.
Create an account today and be up and running in minutes.
In other ways, spam is worse than junk mail or junk phone calls. Although some spam is simply unwanted but legitimate advertising, much of it is worse. It can include everything from scam offers to malicious code--all designed to wreak havoc on your financial well-being or on your computer. Here are some of the most current and prevalent spam threats:
These files are hidden in email attachments that, when opened, install malicious code--typically spyware or viruses--designed to steal or destroy data on your PC.
This type of malware also comes in an email attachment, but turns your computer into a server for the purpose of sending spam to other PCs. Zombies are on the increase and now occupy six percent of all PCs in the United States.
Phishers and Vishers
Phishers send emails that try to mimic messages from legitimate financial companies or other businesses you may actually use. The spam phishing email will ask you to go to a fake or "spoofed" website to re-enter your credit card number or verify your password. Vishers will ask you to call them to do the same thing. Remember that reputable businesses will never make such requests by email.
Plain Old Scams
You have neither won a lottery in Turkey, nor were you specially selected by the exiled wife of a late president to receive $10 million in exchange for the use of your bank account number. Don't be disappointed. If an offer sounds too good or too goofy to be true, it probably is.
There are a lot of spam offers of sexual aids or solicitations that you can see through but that your kids just shouldn't see at all.
For Young and Old
Speaking of kids, be sure to explain spam to them. They're so comfortable with PCs that they fearlessly click on everything, including things they shouldn't. Make sure they don't open email from people they don't know. Warn them not to open attachments blindly because they may release spyware, viruses, or inappropriate content. Ask them to show you any email that they aren't sure of before they open it. If you think your children will be harmed by content that might appear in spam, you should consider if they are old enough or mature enough for their own email accounts. For younger children, make sure to set the spam folder settings in their email and review their incoming email subject lines when they log in.
The Spam List
Keep your email address off of spam lists by keeping it low profile. When you post your email address in an online forum or provide it to others in a message, try to hide it so automated tools used by spammers will be tricked. For example, instead of using email@example.com, type "marian at Norton dot com" or "marian at n0rt0n d0t c0m." Create an email address you use just for online shopping and another email address for correspondence. With free Web email it's easy to create multiple accounts so you can limit the spam that appears in your primary account.
What to Do
So far, there is no such thing as a "do not email" list. Until there is, you'll have to take care of spam yourself. Fortunately there are good tools to help you do that. Most email programs include spam filters that detect and isolate spam. Many Internet service providers filter out spam so it never reaches your PC. But to get additional protection against spam, you may need to install security software to screen, detect, and block spam.
Should spam slip through these filters, take the simplest approach to suspicious emails and just hit delete.
Safety for every device.
Security is no longer a one-machine affair. You need a security suite that helps protect all your devices – your Windows PC, Mac, Android smartphone or your iPad.
Try for 30 days before you buy with Norton Security Deluxe – helps protect up to 5 of your devices for one low price.
Editorial note: Our articles provide educational information for you. NortonLifeLock offerings may not cover or protect against every type of crime, fraud, or threat we write about. Our goal is to increase awareness about cyber safety. Please review complete Terms during enrollment or setup. Remember that no one can prevent all identity theft or cybercrime, and that LifeLock does not monitor all transactions at all businesses.
Copyright © 2022 NortonLifeLock Inc. All rights reserved. NortonLifeLock, the NortonLifeLock Logo, the Checkmark Logo, Norton, LifeLock, and the LockMan Logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of NortonLifeLock Inc. or its affiliates in the United States and other countries. Firefox is a trademark of Mozilla Foundation. Android, Google Chrome, Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google, LLC. Mac, iPhone, iPad, Apple and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Alexa and all related logos are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Microsoft and the Window logo are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the U.S. and other countries. The Android robot is reproduced or modified from work created and shared by Google and used according to terms described in the Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution License. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners.