Tuesday, April 6, 2010

3. Be careful about sharing your e-mail or instant message address

  • Only share your primary e-mail address with people you know. Avoid listing your e-mail address on your social networking site, in large Internet directories, and in job-posting Web sites. Don't even post it on your own Web site (unless you disguise it as described below).
  • Set up an e-mail address dedicated solely to Web transactions. Consider using a free e-mail service, like Windows Live Hotmail to help keep your primary e-mail address private. When you get too much spam there, simply drop it for a new one.
  • Create an e-mail name that's tough to crack. Try a combination of letters, numbers, and other characters-Don2Funk9@example.com or J0e_Y0ng@example.com (substituting zero for the letter "O"). Research shows that people with such names get less junk e-mail.
  • Disguise your e-mail address when you post it to a message board, newsgroup, chat room, or other public Web page-for example, SairajUdin AT example DOT com. This way, a person can interpret your address, but the automated programs that spammers use often cannot.
  • Watch out for pre-checked boxes. When you buy things online, companies sometimes pre-select check boxes by which you indicate that it's fine to sell or give your e-mail address to responsible parties. Clear the check box if you don't want to be contacted.

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