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Advice From Snopes: The Facts on Forwarded Emails, Chain-mail & E-mail Petitions

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Spam picture from  MauritsBurgers' flickr photos.

By now, most people are familiar with Snopes.com and/or Truthorfiction.com for determining whether information received via e-mail is true or false. (If not, start using them!) Well, Snopes.com recently put together a fantastic “E-mail Fact List”. The the purpose of the list; to inform our readers on what really happens when you send/receive forwarded e-mails, chain letter e-mails and those e-mail petitions. So we at Pacific NorthWest Computers is posting that information to help inform everyone on whats going on behind the scenes with chain mail, the dangers in forwarding those emails  and the facts on e-mail petitions. Enjoy and please forward to friends, family and co-workers!

  1. Almost all e-mails that ask you to add your name and forward on to others are similar to that mass letter years ago that asked people to send business cards to the little kid in Florida who wanted to break the Guinness Book of Records for the most cards. All it was, and all any of this type of e-mail is, is a way to get names and ‘cookie’ tracking information for telemarketers and spammers to validate active e-mail accounts for their own profitable purposes. The host sender is getting a copy each time it gets forwarded and then is able to get lists of ‘active’ e-mail addresses to use in SPAM e-mails or sell to other spammers. If you have been sending out (FORWARDING) the above kinds of e-mail, now you know why you get so much SPAM.
    • Do yourself a favor and STOP adding your name(s) to those types of listings, regardless of how inviting they might sound. You may think you are supporting a great cause, but you are NOT! Instead, you will be getting tons of junk mail later. Plus, you are helping the spammers get rich;. Let’s not make it easy for them.
  2. REMOVE ALL EMAIL ADDRESSES STILL ATTACHED BEFORE YOU FORWARD A MESSAGE. IT IS PUTTING EVERYONE’S NAME OUT THERE. Most people use a nickname for their email just so their real name is not out there on the Internet. BUT……. if YOU have listed their real name in your contacts, it will also show up next to their email address. Be a friend and delete all the names before forwarding. Even better, send everything by BCC. That’s BLIND CARBON COPY. That way NO names will ever show up on an email.
  3. That brings us to E-mail petitions. E-mail petitions are NOT acceptable to Congress or any other organization. To be acceptable, petitions must have a signed signature and full address of the person signing the petition.

I hope this opens some eyes and educates folks on whats going on behind the scenes with chain mail, the dangers in forwarding those emails  and the facts on e-mail petitions. The aware we are to how cyber-criminals work, the better we are on preventing SPAM and identity issues.

Please pass this blog posting along to all  friends, family or co-workers!

Jon Pienkowski
Pacific NorthWest Computers
http://www.pnwcomputers.com

Main content is from Snopes.com
Edited and Formatted by Pacific NorthWest Computers
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Written by pacificnwcomputers

November 5, 2009 at 1:21 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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