What Is Spam And Why We Get It
Spam emails are any unsolicited messages that are sent by email. The very first spam email was sent in 1978 to 600 people, and it wasnt intended to cause any harm. Today, spam emails account for nearly half of all email traffic worldwide, and they fall into several different categories: advertising, phishing scams, 419 scams, adult content, malware, and others.
What all categories of spam email have in common is the reason why they are sent: to make money. Even though spammers receive only 1 reply for every 12,500,000 emails sent, they can still earn up to $7,000 per day because over 14 billion spam messages are sent on a daily basis.
You might think that sending countless spam email messages every day is a terrible job, regardless of how much it pays, but thats really not the case. Spammers use sophisticated tools to automate their work and launch massive spam email campaigns with a click of a button. The only thing spammers struggle with is finding valid email addresses.
Thats why they often purchase massive email databases from websites that dont care about the privacy of their visitors or purchase long lists of email addresses on digital black markets from hackers who have obtained them illegally. The next time you sign up for an email subscription, keep in mind that your email address may end up offered for sale somewhere on the internet.
What Is Email Spam
Email spam, also known as , refers to unsolicited email messages, usually sent in bulk to a large list of recipients. Spam can be sent by real humans, but more often, it is sent by a botnet, which is a network of computers infected with malware and controlled by a single attacking party . Apart from email, spam can also be distributed via text messages or social media.
Most people find spam annoying but consider it an inevitable side effect of using email communication. While spam is annoying — it can choke email inboxes if not properly filtered and regularly deleted — it can also be a threat.
Email spam senders, or spammers, regularly alter their methods and messages to trick potential victims into downloading malware, sharing data or sending money.
Spam emails are almost always commercial and driven by a financial motive. Spammers try to promote and sell questionable goods, make false claims and deceive recipients into believing something that’s not true.
The most popular spam subjects include the following:
- online gambling
A common misconception is that spam is an acronym that stands for “stupid pointless annoying malware.” The term is actually derived from a famous Monty Python Flying Circus sketch in which there are many repetitive mentions of the canned meat product Spam.
Report It To Your Company
If you receive a phishing email at your work address, you should follow your companys policy rather than doing anything else. Your IT security policies might require you to forward a phishing email to a specific address, fill out an online report, log a ticket, or merely delete it.
If youre not sure what your companys policy is, ask your IT security team. We recommend you find this out before you get a phishing email, if possible. Its better to prepare and be ready.
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How To Filter Spam On A Mac
To report an email as spam in the Mail app on a Mac, select an email that you want to block and click the button at the top of the window. To train Mail to filter our spam, go to Preferences> > Enable junk mail filtering.
If you want to filter spam from coming to your Mail app, you can also click Mail in the Apple menu bar at the top of your screen. Then click Preferences and select the Junk Mail tab at the top of the pop-up window. Finally, check the Enable junk mail filtering box at the top.
If you are still getting spam messages, you select them and click the Move selected messages to Junk button. You can find this at the top of your window next to the trash icon. You can also right-click and select Move to Junk.
This will train Mail to move emails from the sender to your Junk folder, depending on the settings that you choose.
Dont Interact With Spam Emails
If youve ever thought about responding to a spam email, donteven if its a request to permanently remove yourself from their mailing list. This signals to whoever is on the other end of the email that your account is active, and could lead to receiving even more spam as a result.
Additionally, its important to never click on anything in an email from an unknown sender. Even if they seem like a legitimate company, its crucial to avoid clicking links or opening attachments from anyone youre not 100% sure is who they say they are.
Also Check: Unarchiving Outlook Emails
Report It To The Company That Allegedly Sent The Mail
If the phishing email pretends to be from a company, you can often report it directly to that company. For example, Amazon has a dedicated email address and form to report both email and phone phishing.
Most companies and government agencies have ways you can report phishing. If you search report phishing, you should be able to find it pretty quickly.
Email Engagement Is Poor
The list has inactive members
If a majority of your users don’t open your email, email providers have a strong reason to believe that the emails from this domain are no longer adding value.
There is no point in sending emails to a user who does not open your email. You are not only wasting your money but also adding to a poor domain reputation. I can’t recommend this enough. Whenever we onboard new customers experiencing low opens, we recommend them to prune their email list, and maintain a valid email list at all times. It would be a good idea to do some in-depth cohort analysis to measure user engagement over a specific period.
From a domain reputation standpoint:
50% email opens for 5,000 subscribers > 20% email open for 50,000 subscribers
Apart from getting a lot of SPAM complaints and email bounce, people won’t engage with your email. So avoid buying lists or scraping emails off the internet.
Not having a double opted-in list
Malformed From Email address
We can’t tell for sure if this goes as a direct signal to SPAM filters but we have seen emails with trustworthy addresses getting much better open rates. Also, weird obscure email addresses can make some users mark them as SPAM .
If you cater to users with multiple interests it is best to segment them based on that and so that you only send relevant emails.
Segments are a combination of and conditions on top of your email lists.
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How To Block Spam In Gmail
Open a message from any sender that you want to block. Then click the three-dot icon to the right of the senders details. You can find this next to the Star and Reply buttons. Finally, select Block and click Block from the pop-up message that appears.
All future messages from this sender will go straight to your spam folder. This process will be similar on different email clients, such as Yahoo Mail.
Youll Never Fail With Donotmail
Potentially dangerous mail can find its way to your physical mailbox too.
Perhaps you have noticed that you have been getting a lot of junk and spam mail in your physical mailbox latelyred flag No. 1.
Disposing of the spam and junk mail has become a veritable chorered flag No. 2.
Do you need a third red flag? Its high time you did something about it! Scammers have developed a scope of psychological techniques to lure you into their swindles and deprive you of money. Luckily, we have a neat and elegant solution.
Besides helping you unsubscribe from emails and stop receiving them, our DoNotPay app can help you stop the stream of unsolicited mail flooding your mailbox. How? With one of its latest functionalitiesDoNotMail.
DoNotMail has been designed specifically to eliminate the danger of you falling prey to scammers sending physical spam mail and spare you the trouble of disposing of junk mail.
The benefits are:
- Guaranteed removal of junk mail
- User’s full control over their mailbox
- Environmental sustainability
- Notification about on-going class-action lawsuits
In case you would like to give DoNotMail a try, your only task will be to take a snapshot of your junk or spam mail and forward it to us by doing the following:
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What Are Spam Emails
Spam emails are emails sent to you without your knowledge or consent, which often contain marketing. It is email that you dont want and didnt ask for, and its content can cause annoyance, embarrassment and even distress. However, its worth remembering that the sender generally doesnt target recipients personally. The same spam email can be sent to millions of people at the same time and the addresses can often be guessed.
Not all marketing emails sent without consent are spam emails. Marketing emails can be sent without prior consent by organisations who obtained your email address when you bought something from them and are advertising similar products or services. However, these marketing emails must abide by strict rules regarding their content and provide you with the opportunity to opt out.
Spam Laws Are Violated
Missing Unsubscribe link
All marketing emails need to have a clear way for users to opt-out of them. If you are sending emails to the opted-in list ensure every email going to them has a way to opt out of using an unsubscribe link.
Usually unsubscribe links are present in the footer, but you should include it in the header too. It’s not mandated by law but email providers like Gmail consider this an important signal of reputation. This is how an unsubscribe link in the header looks like:
Unsubscribe Link in the Email Header
- Malformed From Email address
Issues with the HTML
If your email has different versions of HTML and plain text email or broken HTML, then your emails will go into the spam folder.
Broken HTML will appear sloppy and unreadable on almost all email clients. Not only will users mark your email as SPAM, but it will also alert SPAM filters .
Email with broken HTML
An important note here – I have seen way too often, marketers copy content directly from Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint, etc. These applications add additional unwanted characters to your message source. Always copy your content to a plain text editor that strips off all such characters.
Email size > 100KB
Email Acid team did a test on email size and this is what they had to say:
We created text-only, HTML emails in various sizes, from 15-650KB.
Unsafe OR binary attachment
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Donotpay Protects Your Privacy And Finances
Sharing your credit card details online comes with certain risks, and its getting more difficult to tell good and bad websites apart. With DoNotPays virtual credit card generator, you will be able to protect your identity and bank account from cyber scammers.
Whenever you run into a suspicious email or website, generate a virtual credit card and proceed without worries. Our virtual cards also work like a charm if you want to avoid automatic payments after free trials.
How To Block Emails On Outlook And Hotmail
If you want to undo this action, just go to Tools > . Go to the Blocked Senders tab, click on the specific email address then choose Remove Selected Sender.
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Spam Spammers And Spambots
Spammers use spambots to crawl the internet looking for email addresses that are used to create email distribution lists. The lists are used to send junk email to multiple email addresses — usually hundreds of thousands — at one time.
The conversion rate for spam is low. Simply put, few people actually fall for emails from rich but desperate Nigerian princes or from so-called pharmaceutical businesses claiming to hold the patent on a miracle lose-weight-fast pill.
Spammers expect only a small number of recipients to respond or interact with their message, but they can still swindle their way to a big payday because they can easily send their shady message to so many emails addresses in a single stroke. That is why spam continues to be a big problem in the modern digital economy.
How To Block Emails On Iphone And Ipad
With iOS13 and iPadOS, you can block unwanted emails under Contacts or using the Mail app.
Blocking unwanted emails using iPhone Contacts
Blocking unwanted emails using the Mail app
You may unblock senders by going to Settings > Mail > Blocked. Find the name of the blocked sender and simply hit Unblock.
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Donotpay Keeps Your Info Safe From Scammers
There are many drawbacks to sharing your private information online, especially when you are not sure whether the website that asks you to do so is a reliable one. To bypass all the risks and play it safe, you can use DoNotPay’s virtual credit card generator. Our product helps you protect your identity and bank account from cyber criminals.
The next time suspicious websites ask you to provide your banking information, fire up DoNotPay’s generator and feed them the bogus credit card number. Our virtual credit cards are made up of randomly selected numbers, tied to a dedicated temporary email address, and linked to a fake name! They also contain no funds, so you won’t have to pay for any service unless you choose to.
The best part is that companies will have no way of telling our card from a legit one, so you’re sure to pass their check-ups and avoid being charged for unwanted subscriptions!