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Nobody likes getting spam email. It clutters up your inbox, tests your patience, and sometimes even has the audacity to scam you into giving up your private details!

So what can you do to deal with it? Here are five helpful tips on how to deal with and avoid spam email.

1. Use a spam filter

Most email platforms will give you the option to mark any email as spam. Doing this will redirect any future emails that you receive from that email address straight to your Spam or Junk folder, keeping your inbox squeaky clean. It will also prevent any emails that possess the same properties (for example what the email is about, its language, how many other people are receiving it, etc.) from reaching your inbox. Whenever you’re certain that you don’t wish to see emails like this in your inbox anymore, mark it as spam.

To do this, open up the spam email, and look for the option to mark it as spam or junk.

For instance, on Gmail, you’ll see a series of icons along the top of the email. Click on the exclamation mark icon. This will “Report spam”.

As another example, for Outlook users, you’ll see an icon that says “Junk” along the top of the email. Clicking on this icon will mark the email as junk.

 

Make sure that the email is truly spam before reporting it as such. If you mistakenly mark an important or relevant email as spam, any future important or relevant emails that you may receive from that email address will end up in your spam folder, and you might miss them.

2. Create a junk email address

This may seem like a lot of extra effort, but it’ll save you from oodles of inconvenience in the future. Create another email account, whose only purpose is to cop the spam!

What this means is that every time you’re required to sign up for something, such as an online account required to use a particular website, you don’t have to use your main email address; you can use your junk one instead. This way, any potential spam that you may receive from that website will be sent to the junk email address. Your main inbox will remain spam free, and you can still use the website!

Remember, only sign up for an online account using your junk email address when you’re sure that you won’t be interested in receiving emails from the host. You don’t want to miss out on anything potentially important or helpful.

3. Be cautious before you click ‘unsubscribe’

For most legitimate senders, there will be a link to “Unsubscribe” from future emails. Clicking on this will prevent you from ever receiving any emails from this address again in the future.

 

However, though this is often the first course of action that most people take in response to spam, many forget to exercise caution in clicking on links from suspicious emails. Oftentimes, scam emails will be riddled with links, which you should absolutely NOT click on! These links can lead you to malicious pages that infect your computer with viruses.

Naturally, many scammers will mask these links behind an “Unsubscribe” button. If you suspect that an email may be a scam, do NOT click on any links within the body of the email, including “Unsubscribe”. Mark the email as spam, and move on!

4. Do not reply to the email

It may seem tempting to fire back to an annoying spam email with a snarky retort, but avoid doing this at all costs to your pride! Responding to a spammer will only let them know that your email address is active. This will spur them to keep spamming you incessantly. You don’t want that!

5. Never follow instructions or open attachments

Scammers will employ several different ways to scam you in a single email. Not only should you avoid clicking on links, but you should also avoid following any instructions (for example, instructions to unsubscribe) or, importantly, opening any attachments. Clicking on these attachments is the easiest way to download a malicious virus onto your computer.

In the digital age, there are all sorts of creative means to fool innocent people online. Make sure that you stay ever-vigilant when it comes to email – approach every suspicious email with skepticism.

What do you do to remove your spam? Share with us below.

Image source Shutterstock

  • Most legitimate hosts offer an unsuscribe as noted in the article. Some make you login to change your preferences or offer no option to unsubscribe. I spam the latter ones.

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  • All good tips. I have 2 accounts – my personal and work email. I obviously received Junk and SPAM emails to both. Previously, my Outlook had a SPAM button that seems to have disappeared. I’ll need to go looking for it somewhere because I loved it and used to use it often. An upgrade to my PC has made this disappear. My hot mail seems to be great at weeding out SPAM and so presents no problems. They all go to my Junk immediately.

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  • Great tips, thanks. We do them all.

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  • Great article and tips …I have a second email account that I use for comps and the like. thanks for sharing .

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  • Thanks for the advice. I usually just mark it as junk. Will now start marking them as spam.

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  • Wise words of advice, thank you.

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  • great tip about the unsubscribe one, i have quickly went through my emails and pressed unsubscribe without a thought

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  • Eeek… #3 – no wonder they never stop when I click unsubscribe! Love tip #2 as well. Thanks for the handy tips, I’ll be sure to follow now…

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  • I unsubscribe if it is a legit email I don’t want but if it is an imposter pretending to be a bank or such I will contact the actual company so I can forward it on to them

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  • Bugger! I’ve been pressing “Unsubscribe” and I can tell you that sometimes it doesn’t work. I thought by Australian law the companies concerned had to remove you but overseas companies obviously don’t obey our laws.
    I mark obvious spam as Junk Mail so that if it arrives again, it will be marked as spam ready to remove.

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  • I also mark spam as junk so next time they send me something, the email goes immediately to the junk. I had never thought about the risk of using the “unsubscribing” button in junk emails. Thanks for pointing that out.

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  • Good tips, we bring them all in practice already.

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  • I just wish these USA spammers would go away. Fills my box up so fast and if I’m away, then I can’t get the legitimate emails I am waiting on.

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  • some handy tips, i find my inbox full of crap all the time. also phone calls from scammers too.

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  • I’ve had a few from USA recently too. Trouble is they look like legitimate email addresses that I have received. I unsubscribe them and don’t get any more from same email address but I have noticed some are from the same street address. I’m not going to waste money writing to them.

    Reply

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