So, you just got yourself a brand new web site. All the bugs have been worked out and your site is ready to go live. After its launch, search engines start spidering your site, people are reading its content and, unfortunately, spammers are getting your e-mail address!
Spam, the Junk mail of the cyber world, is generated by programs called spambots. Spambots are programs designed to capture e-mail addresses from web sites, blogs, newsgroups and chat room postings. After your e-mail address is captured, it is added to a mailing list. From then on, it’s spam city.
Fortunately, there are ways to prevent spam. These include:
- e-mail address encryption
- spam blockers or filters
- contat forms to send user-entered data directly to your e-mail – this allows you to remove your email address from your web site.
Although setting up a contact form on your site seems like the best choice, it could take you from the victim to culprit. A process called form hijacking can take place, meaning that someone could hijack your contact form to use to send spam. This could get you into a lot of trouble, when people find that their “Lottery Jackpot Winner” spam messages have been coming from your web site. On top of the angry victims, your web host could kick you off and take your web site down. To prevent this hijacking, make sure that your web developer has added the necessary filters to your contact form to prevent it from becoming a spam host.
Spam is everywhere and, most of the time, unavoidable. Cut down on it by asking your webmaster to encrypt your e-mail address so that it cannot be seen by spambots. Have your web developer make sure that your contact form is safe. Get a spam blocker if you don’t have one already. Until then, enjoy your “Online Pharmacy” spam messages…
Allan Collins – Blizzard Internet Marketing, Inc.