Letter: There Are Ways to Get Off E-Mail Spam Lists

Michael Schwartz wonders how to get off e-mail spam lists (Letters to the Editor, Jan. 7). I offer four suggestions:

First and foremost, give your real address only to organizations you know and trust.

Second, never allow your real e-mail to be posted online. Nowhere. Not on corporate Web sites, discussion groups or usenet. Spammers use robots to harvest these addresses.

Third, when you do receive unsolicited e-mail, never use the opt-out link – it tells spammers the address is good. Just delete the e-mail. Or use your mail program to filter spam – MS Outlook has good wizards for this.

Fourth, check out www.sneakemail.com, a great free service run by Kevin Swope. Sneakemail generates new e-mail addresses for you, forwarding mail to your real account. Because you never reuse an address, you can see who is spamming you and cut them off easily. I grabbed a new e-mail for this letter. E-mail me at [email protected] I’ll get it – yet I haven’t revealed my true address. If I receive spam through this particular address, I’ll blame the DM News readership – then I will just turn it off.

The idea of single-use e-mail addresses is powerful. I hope this idea is soon incorporated into mail clients and mail servers. If it is, e-mail will become 100 percent permission-based and spam will vanish.

I look forward to that day.

Alan Rimm-Kaufman

Vice president of marketing

Crutchfield Corp.

Charlottesville, VA

[email protected]

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