Fight SPAM!!

Spam has taken over our lives to such an extent that users are now in a dilemma whether communication through email is at all a good idea. The first national standard set against bulk commercial email which was unsolicited was the 'Can Spam' bill signed by President Bush in December 2003. This bill stops senders of bulk commercial and unsolicited emails using misleading return addresses which adequate hide their identities and using dictionaries to produce such emails - incidentally this bill was voted by the Senate at 97 to 0. These emails must abide by rules like: carrying an opt out option and must not carry a confusing subject line. The law prohibits senders from accumulating addresses from sites and if he violates the law he may land up in jail for up to one year.

We ought to remember that large numbers of spam are now arriving from other countries. These emails which come from other countries are tougher to combat and control. The Internet is not bound by any country blockades so controlling this problem becomes more difficult thought the laws seem to be good. Is there any thing you could do for protection? Here are the top tried and tested rules for protection against spam:

Number 1: Avoid displaying your email address on the net at all cost. 'Spam spider' is a kind of product which looks for email addresses in the net and then gather them for sending subsequent emails. If you are interested, do a search on 'spam spider' and you will be amazed at what you get back. 'Spambots' and 'spam spiders' and similar rogues on the net is confronted ably by a site called which is an open source project which just goes on sending them rubbish web pages which carry nonsense email addresses.

Number 2: Any spam blocking software can be of great help to stop the spam flow. You may also buy a professional version but whatever you do, get the software because it will save you time. The software is not foolproof, but they really do help although you will usually have to carry out some manual set up to block certain types of email.

Number 3: Use the multiple email address approach. Getting a free and new email address should not be a problem and each one can be used for varying communication needs and keep the other ones as back ups. It is something like providing your personal cell number to only your friends but all others have to contact you through your business number.

Number 4: One of the biggest problems with spam is the attachment which is an usual feature and these attachments could carry the viruses. But personal email is free country for spammers. Usually vendors of Firewall can offer this type of service.

Number 5: Did you know that email service providers are now offering 'bulk mail' baskets? If you find that your current configuration does not allow this, change the service provider. When you receive any email from an unknown person, just pile them up in a bulk email heap and select to let them into your circle. Spam Blocking software has this concept as well, but having extra layers seems critical these days, so it is worth looking into.

Internet Banking

Perhaps you have decided to start internet banking. Though there are many ways to get started, a lot would depend on the internet company you decide to work with. It is a simple process if you register with your existing brick and mortars bank. All you need to do is to call the bank and ask them to register you for their online services.

The bank would then send you the necessary instruction via mail. Information like how to log on to their internet banking site and a typical username would be provided. They would also tell you about certain requirements, like having a 128-bit encryption on your computer. Such security measures are needed to avoid being tricked by fraudulent websites which are ready to steal your information.

The next intimation from the bank would carry your password and instructions on changing it, when needed. It will also inform you about the various security tokens you have to choose, such as images and captions, then it will tell you how to sign on to the bank's site and begin banking. The process differs when the bank is a virtual bank. You can start by choosing the virtual bank you will use for your personal or company's business.

Many of the systems are same as a brick and mortar bank. You want to make sure they are FDIC insured. Over above knowing their overdraft fees you must know more about the interest rates on savings account, loans and some checking accounts.

You will also be wise to read any information they have on their rules and procedures. You must agree to these. If you are contemplating opening an internet banking account with a virtual bank, a print out of this information might become handy.

There are some parameters within which you are allowed to choose your username and password, as allowed by the virtual bank. Internet banking is now a reality and you can start immediately. The information which the bank seeks from you to open an account, is the same as any other bank. Your contact number, name of your company, your name, address and social security number is all the information banks need. Make some kind of deposit with the bank, before you start operating the account. After all is done, you can carry on transactions with simply touching your mouse.