Why Am I Getting Spam from Myself?

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I get email from:

someone@somedomain.com
<myemail@hotmail.com>

where “someone@somedomain.com” is someone I don’t know, but “myemail@hotmail.com” is, in fact, my email address. It as if I was getting spam from myself, but I did not send it.

How do I stop these emails from coming into my box? It’s usually for drugs or financial services that I don’t need or would never be interested in. How can they use my own email? I can’t block them as it says it is illegal to block my own email.

I’ll start with the bad news: there’s almost nothing you can do.

This is spam, pure and simple. Abusing your email address is only one of many techniques spammers use to throw their garbage into our mail boxes.

The remedies are pretty standard, albeit less than 100% effective.

Read moreWhy Am I Getting Spam from Myself?

My Flood of Auto-Responses

Last week I made an innocuous change to The Ask Leo! Newsletter, and as a result I received a flood of auto-responses delivered to my inbox.

While annoying, it was actually fairly interesting to see no less than three unexpected patterns arise.

It’s important to realize that the various types of auto-responses may not do what you think. In fact, they may be doing something else entirely.

And don’t get me started on those challenge-response spam blockers. (OK, too late…)

Read moreMy Flood of Auto-Responses