- Only give your email address out to people you want to have it
- If you buy online, read the terms and conditions carefully and tick the box which prevents the retailer forwarding your details to others. Only use sites which are trusted.
- Contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP) – they can block future emails from an identified sender.
- Once an ISP believes their network is being used to send unlawful, unsolicited email, they can block all further emails sent to its subscribers from a specific address of domain.
- Never reply to spammers and never buy anything from them.
- Adjust settings on your email so junk email is filtered away.
- Invest in a spam filter
- A hoax or chain message is any message (email, text, website) that encourages the reader to pass it on to others.
- Chain messages can range from promises of money (a lottery win for example), stories promising good luck to hoax virus alerts. They are started for a number of reasons including generating money, harvesting personal data (email addresses), virus attacks and clogging up a network.
- Chain messages can be annoying, offensive and sometimes threatening. Some even contain illegal content and by passing it on, you could be committing a criminal offence.
If you receive a message:
- Never forward on a message you suspect is a chain message
- Never click on any links or attachments.
- Never reply to a chain message, even if it says 'unsubscribe'
- Delete it.
- Report the scam to the Citizens Advice consumer service - call 03454 040506.
How to avoid chain messages:
- Choose an email address that is difficult for others to guess i.e. no names, ages, locations
- Don't put your email address on the internet
- Use a separate email account to your work or personal one when entering competitions etc. online