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loz25
On our wavelength
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Message 1 of 7
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Lots of spam emails

hello everyone. i have a blueyonder email that i have had for many years. Recently i have noticed an awful lot of spam that isn’t now going into either the junk/spam folder on my iphone and on desktop.

i wondered if there is a problem with the spam filters at the moment or if my email has been compromised. I don’t normally have this many emails not going direct to spam folder. this has been within the last fortnight or so.

i understand i can create a new email but a bit reluctant to as have had it for quite a while but prepared to do this if needs be.

thanks in advance.

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Very Insightful Person
Very Insightful Person
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Message 2 of 7
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Re: Lots of spam emails

Let’s guess that your (Telewest) blueyonder address is, say, 17 years old.

On average, how many new addresses will you have communicated with by email each year since then. Let’s say a very conservative 6 per year giving a total of - 102 individuals, businesses or organisations who now know your email address. If you are on any large circulation lists, with multiple recipients in the “To” or “cc” then the number could be many times 102.

What percentage of that 102 would you trust to keep the details of your email address secure from any deliberate (eg marketing) or accidental (data breaches from hacking) disclosure to third parties?

If only ONE of that 102 has their data disclosed or hacked, then your address will find its way onto a website where hackers buy and sell lists of email addresses from and to each other. 

Here is a list of some uk companies who have suffered data hacking in recent times -

https://www.techworld.com/security/uks-most-infamous-data-breaches-3604586/

and a list of some largely USA-based ones -

https://www.csoonline.com/article/2130877/data-breach/the-biggest-data-breaches-of-the-21st-century.... 

The current record-holder is Yahoo with 3 BILLION accounts/addresses hacked.

(Yes I know that the US population is only 325 million – but lots of them have lots of multiple and redundant addresses obviously – and there are many overseas users as well). 

One conclusion to be drawn from the above is that – the longer you use an email address , the more likely it is to fall into the hands of multiple spammers. And therefore the volume of spam will increase year on year. 

So, you could -

(a) change your email address every few years – which requires you to be very organised about keeping track of who has your address so that you can tell them when you change it.

(b) use multiple email addresses (xxSmith1, xxSmith2 etc etc) for each type of communication you have (family and friends – shopping – etc) so that you have a smaller number to notify when you decide to stop using one of the addresses.

(c) hope that VM will get better at detecting spam.

(d) pray for divine intervention.

 

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coenoby
Knows their stuff
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Re: Lots of spam emails


@loz25 wrote:

i wondered if there is a problem with the spam filters at the moment or if my email has been compromised.


Depends what you mean by 'compromised'. Smiley Happy

As BillC45 has explained, the amount of spam is largely related to how many people and organisations are aware of your email address. As that number increases so does the likelihood that it will come to the attention of spammers. It does not necessarily mean that your email has been hacked or that someone has gained access to your account.

You could put your email address into this website https://haveibeenpwned.com/ to see if it is one of the many that have caught up in any of the data breaches that have occurred over the last few years.

If it has, that might be an encouragement to set up a new email address but at the very least you should change your password just to be safe.

The other factor that leads to an increase in spam appearing in your inbox rather than your spam folder is that those spammers may have just found a way to get around VM's spam filters.

There is a constant battle between the good guys who try to keep spam out of your inbox and the bad guys who desperately want to get their emails into your inbox. Unfortunately, the good guys are often on the back foot.Smiley Embarassed

Coenoby

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loz25
On our wavelength
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Message 4 of 7
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Re: Lots of spam emails

thanks for the advice guys much appreciated 

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SDC
Super solver
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Message 5 of 7
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Re: Lots of spam emails


@BillC45 wrote:

So, you could -

(a) change your email address every few years – which requires you to be very organised about keeping track of who has your address so that you can tell them when you change it.

(b) use multiple email addresses (xxSmith1, xxSmith2 etc etc) for each type of communication you have (family and friends – shopping – etc) so that you have a smaller number to notify when you decide to stop using one of the addresses.

(c) hope that VM will get better at detecting spam.

(d) pray for divine intervention.


Of the four options, (d) is your best bet. I can't envisage (c) ever being a viable option as it will take VM's time and money.

Or set up and use gmail (or something similar) instead.




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DangerousDave
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Message 6 of 7
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Re: Lots of spam emails

I found BillC45's response just a little condescending because his explanation wouldn't account for a sudden increase in spam emails.  I think the comment you made about hackers finding their way around VM's spam filters is much more likely.  From what I can recall this is what happened about 12 months ago (maybe more) and VM appeared to have resolved it, albeit only temporarily it seems.   I too have seen a significant increase in spam very recently so I've set up blocks, created filters, unsubscribed from as many as I can, but the next day I always get similar spam but from a different source.  It's almost as if the spammers are learning that I'm blocking them and then sending emails from a new server.  Is that possible?  Should we be hoping that VM are aware of a spike in spamming and that they are working on improving the filters?  I don't want to even think about changing email addresses yet because of all the hassle that would entail and it's not actually hurting me, so I'll keep monitoring it for a few weeks, see if it slows.

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VMCopperUser
Trouble shooter
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Message 7 of 7
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Re: Lots of spam emails

The condescending reply is probably because a lot of people (and I am not saying the OP is one) think this could be 100% blocked regardless of what you have done or not done to protect yourself.  I do agree that there has to sometimes be a point where you say "Well, what do you expect?" but it's only because I have seen these things for enough years to know better myself and so much of protecting yourself online is now public knowledge.

 

That said, I do think that some people have found a way to get around the spam filters, Perhaps some fake header info that gets the emails skipped from processing, who knows.  Spam is, and can be, soul destroying if you rely on email.

As for "protecting" your name and never using it online, that doesn't even matter.  The servers still (last time I checked at least) give back 550 errors when an email address is valid or doesn't exist.  That means all someone has to do is send out a few billion fake emails and then mark the 550 returns off as not-valid, all of the ones that get delivered are working addresses!... So you shouldn't fret just because you receive an email, sometimes it is scanned down and it's just bad luck.

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Most things I say I make up and sometimes it's useful, don't be mean if it's wrong.
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