You once said that when it comes to email scams, we should just mark it as a scam or spam and move on. But I’ve found websites to report them to, and some email addresses to forward them to, and I’d like to think I’m doing some good. Are you saying that I’m wasting my time reporting email scams directly to these agencies?
I just don’t believe reporting spam to these sites and services is worth the time and effort. I don’t see any harm in doing it; I just don’t think it helps.
I do want to be very clear, however, that a different type of “reporting spam” is very important, and we should all be doing that.
Why Am I Getting Spam from Myself? - Getting spam from yourself? We all do. I'll look at why it happens; what, if anything, you can do about it; and something unlikely but important to check.
I’m drowning in spam. What can I do? - Sometimes, it seems like spam is a tidal wave of junk that threatens to make email completely unusable. While you can't stop spam, you can manage it very well with a good spam filter.
Footnotes & references
1: The original, full question included several example email addresses that I elected not to republish here.
A business I was working with told me that they ‘sent my email address to spam’ because they didn’t like what I was asking of them. Now I’m a smidge worried. If they added my email address to their spam filter, does that mean I’m somehow going to be pegged as a spammer in the larger Internet world? I seem to recall that someone once told me that anytime someone clicks that a message is spam, it’s a strike against you. Enough strikes and we’re in trouble. I don’t remember how many strikes he said it took to be in trouble, though.
So…am I worrying about nothing? Or should I do something about it, if there’s anything to do, that is?
The answer is simple: do nothing.
The reason behind the answer, naturally, is quite complex.
Spam filters – particularly good spam filters – rely heavily on users marking things as spam. In a way, it’s a form of “crowd sourcing”, where the actions of users build a database used to determine what is and is not spam in subsequently received emails.
Where your email is marked as spam, and who is doing the marking, has a lot to do with any potential impact on emails you send in the future.
3: Most mobile apps are, in a sense, extensions of the online service, when they are specifically written for that service. General purpose mobile email programs operate like the desktop equivalents, if they even have a “mark as spam” feature at all.
I received a rather lengthy question that mentioned a specific service that claims to turn the tables on spammers either by spamming them back or by somehow using the content of their spam messages in an attempt to harm them in some way… or at least annoy the heck out of them.
Now as much as spam angers us, besides ultimately being ineffective, vigilante justice just isn’t the answer.
Hi, there. I’ve been using my Yahoo email since 2009 and I’ve never had problems with receiving so many spams into my inbox folder. But recently, within like the last two weeks, there was an abrupt influx of some spams claiming that I had won lotteries other that I’m eligible to their belongings and they’re all managing to authenticate themselves to Yahoo’s servers because I’m finding themselves in my inbox folder, not my spam folder. Now I know that these are scams but my question is why is it after all these years of using my email, I’m now encountering this problem?
Spam and spam fighting is a really complex game of cat and mouse. Spammers are constantly trying to find their way into your inbox. I have a few ideas of what could possibly have happened in your situation.
As I was dealing with my email the other day, a friend was with me. He nearly when ballistic when I used the “Report Spam” button to get rid of some email in my in box. He said I was using it wrong. There’s a right and wrong way? Why shouldn’t I just use it?
Oh my. Yes, there is most definitely a wrong way to use it. In fact, it’s so wrong, that you could be contributing to other people not being able to get their email.