If you have an e-mail address you probably received unwanted e-mail of some sort, this is known as spam or junk mail. There is no sure fire way to stop spam, but these pointers may help reduce the amount of messages you have delete on a daily basis.

1. Create a separate e-mail address for signing for lists or online services.

Spammers tend to trawl mailing lists and online discussion boards for addresses, by creating another e-mail address you can ensure your main address is smothered by unwanted e-mails.

2. Use a service like BugMeNot (www.bugmenot.com).

BugMeNot is a service created to bypass logging into websites like the New York Times that require compulsory registration and/or the collection of personal/demographic information.

3. Blind CC your forwards.

Actually this guideline was initially, don`t forward anything, but that would be almost impossible to convince people to do. But to prevent spamming yourself, your friends and family, use the BCC or Blind CC field to address bulk e-mails thus ensuring privacy.

4. Use your address book

Most, if not all e-mail applications; even the free online ones; include an address book. Using the address book to keep the e-mail addresses of your friends and family address, as well as the mailing list administrators; if you`re on mailing lists, allows the junk mail filter of these applications to work more efficiently. If an e-mail shows up from someone not in your address book it will get flagged as junk.

5. Don`t click the remove button

A lot of spam comes with an option that offers to stop sending or remove you with a simple click. In an ideal world that would work, but most spammers are operating illegally, so clicking on that button only confirms your e-mail address is valid and causes more spam.

If your current e-mail account is already overwhelmed by spam, now might be the time to set up a new account; using the current account as the spam catcher; implementing these rules and see how your inbox fares.

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