Avoiding Scams, Hoaxes And Urban Legends


  • Author Bryon Penird
  • Published June 10, 2011
  • Word count 511

A popular subject within the internet these days is all about avoiding scams, hoaxes and urban legends. Listed below are a small number of ways to avoid some of the perils associated with being in touch with the rest of the world via the internet . As a general rule of thumb, beware of any offer that sounds too good to be true, it usually is.. This applies to products being offered on the Internet and particularly to any unsolicited offer or spam you receive within your email. Many of these are scams. The term "spam", in case you do not know, refers to any unsolicited bulk email. If it is not addressed to you, or you do not recognize the sender, or you are being asked to buy something or pass on questionable information, then that's spam. My advise is to "can the spam" immediately by deleting any email you receive from anyone you do not know.

The perfect way to avoid spam, is by being very wary about who you give your email address to. My advise here is to set up a free email account so that you can give this email address to anyone you don't absolutely trust with all of your individual information. It almost never does any good to fight back against spam. Your best plan of action is simply to delete any unwanted email. A trick that has been pretty successful for me is to set up an email rule (or filter) that automatically sends any mail not addressed to me straight to a special folder. The majority of this is spam and can be easily disposed of.

As well as spams and scams, the other thing to look out for on the Internet is hoaxes, urban legends and false information. There are many of these floating all around the Internet these days. Watch out for any email that asks you to send money for some cause, or to forward the e-mail to all of your friends. Nearly all of these are hoaxes. Another category of hoaxes involves virus warnings. If you receive information that indicates it is possible to get a computer virus from doing anything except opening an email attachment or running an application, then this also is in all probability false information.

Most computer viruses are spread by users opening email attachments that contain the virus. You should never open an eMail attachment unless you are expecting one. Even if you know the sender, make sure the attachment is legitimate before opening it. It is a lot safer to delete any questionable attachments and get the sender to resend them than to assume the sender intended to send that email.

Your best defenses against computer viruses are:

  1. Caution in downloading programs from questionable sources.

  2. Regularly scanning your drive with virus protection software.

  3. Backing up all your important data to a different drive or media (floppy, Zip or CD-ROM) as regularly as possible. By doing all of these, if your system does get infected, you can restore it with a minimum of hassle.

This article does not cover everything, but hopefully I have given you an insight in to what is involved. There are plenty of ebooks and such stuff on the internet. I always go to a company called PC Repair London. They do not just repair computer systems, they also provide IT support as well and they are always helpful if you get stuck on anything.

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