Experts say that despite the rise in the volume of spam, there are things you can do to better keep it under control.
* Don't click the "unsubscribe" link. In a perfect world, you should be able to automatically get taken off an e-mail list by unsubscribing in this way. But spammers have co-opted the system and use the unsubscribe link to confirm you have an active e-mail account. They then sell your name to other spammers. Better to just delete the e-mail.
* Use a long e-mail name. The longer your e-mail handle, with letters and numbers included, the lower the chance that a computer-generated e-mail name will match yours. Spammers use software to generate thousands of e-mail names in the hopes that they will match existing accounts.
* Have multiple accounts. By using separate accounts for e-commerce and personal use, you decrease the chances that your personal address will get spammed.
* Avoid chat rooms and Web-based discussion groups. Spammers are constantly harvesting the Internet for new addresses. They do so by using software to search Web pages for names. Online chat rooms and news groups are easy targets.
* Limit how often your e-mail address appears on any Web page. This may be difficult, or undesirable, for many businesspeople.
* Avoid online contests and surveys. These are another prime vehicle for spammers to gather e-mail names.
* Check out new filtering software. Technology is evolving, and many creative solutions are being introduced by Internet providers and other firms.
-- Jonathan Krim