Report spammers to stamp out nuisance

JPCT 150713 Alan Stainer. Photo by Derek Martin

JPCT 150713 Alan Stainer. Photo by Derek Martin

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Chances are, if you own a website you will have seen countless e-mails that start something like the one below, which I received.

‘Hi, Hope you are well,

I was surfing through your Site and realized that despite having a great design; it was not ranking on any of the search engines (Google, Yahoo and Bing) for most of the keywords relating to your business.’

They are so very annoying. They are also not worth your time in the slightest. Here is an excerpt from documentation on Google’s support site about this very thing.

‘Amazingly, we get these spam emails too:

“Dear google.com,

I visited your website and noticed that you are not listed in most of the major search engines and directories...”

Reserve the same skepticism for unsolicited email about search engines as you do for “burn fat at night” diet pills or requests to help transfer funds from deposed dictators.’

I couldn’t have put it better myself and indeed this advice is true whether you get e-mails about ranking on Google, cosmetic surgery for your - ahem - or get rich quick schemes.

Spamming often use services like Gmail and Yahoo, because they are free. Anyone can sign up and start plaguing the world.

You can mark these messages as junk, or block the senders, but did you realise you can also report them too?

Take Gmail for instance, if you go to https://support.google.com/mail/contact/abuse and fill in their form, you can report specific Gmail accounts that are abusing the system. Google obviously take a very dim view of spam behaviour and will take action.

Yahoo have a similar form for reporting Yahoo accounts that are sending spam. Go to http://help.yahoo.com/l/us/yahoo/mail/ymail/spam.html and fill in the details.

Outlook.com has an e-mail address for reporting accounts held with them, rather than an on-line form. If you receive spam from an outlook.com account, send the details to abuse@Outlook.com so they can look into the issue.

Other providers should have methods for reporting account abuse on their systems. You will need to search their sites for information on reporting spammers. While researching this column, I found some of the information hard to find, but it is there. So don’t give up!

Spammers will keep trying, but so should we. If all the people in all the world reported every spam account they came across… who knows? Perhaps the spammers would stop filling our inboxes with junk?

Alan Stainer

http://www.alansitsolutions.com