When you want to fight spam, the actions you take are quite similar to what you will do when you fight illegal activities. You need to have a strategy. Then, the spammer comes up with something to counter you. The good news is that right now there are some clear things that will drastically reduce the possibility of receiving spam emails.
Keep in mind that automation is what makes it really simple for the spammers. Based on the research done by Steven Scott Google constantly looks for ways in which spam automation is countered for all the products they offer. Spam is often sent in bulk. The spammer does not look for email addresses to manually add them to mailing lists. Software is utilized to create really huge spam lists. The good news is that this also means that programs can be used to counter this.
If you want to actively fight spam, here are the most important things you have to do.
Be Smart With Emails
A really simple idea can create a huge difference: when your email cannot be collected, it will not be collected. The email address is going to be added to various different places but if you are attentive, you drastically reduce how much spam email you receive.
The best thing that you can do is to have a secondary email address. As the address has to be added to something that is not of really high importance, you just add the secondary one. Use a Gmail address and use that for actions like blog posting or creating accounts you will not often use since Google does have a very good spam filter already installed.
When you only use the secondary email for activities that are not of high importance for you, when you log in you can simply just select all messages and delete them. You can even have many junk email addresses that you are going to use in the future.
Outsmart The Spambots
A huge disadvantage that spambots have is simply that they are not human. It is thus impossible to spot some subtle distinctions. As an example, if it is possible to disguise your email address, the one that is publicly visible, the spambot will not identify it.
A simple example of outsmarting the spambot is to add “_” to create limits. Instead of email@example.com you add “john_doe_at_gmail.com”. People that see the email will figure out what happened and why it is weird. Even if they do not initially do so, when they receive a message that the email was not delivered they will figure it out. As the spambot harvests the “fake” email you added, it uses it as legit, but it is not and you will reduce spam. By taking such a simple action you get a lot less spam than you would have in a normal way. Similarly, instead of just posting the email address on your blog, you can add a contact form that people would use to contact you.