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Ditch that Email, Then Never Give Out the Same Address Twice
If you're reading this page, you probably have a spam problem. You have a single, or several email accounts that get upwards of 20 pieces of spam daily, maybe as many as 300 each.
You know that ditching your existing accounts could solve the problem, but then you'd lose contact with countless people. No matter how well you think you can cover it by sending out a single "hey everyone, I've got a new email address" message – you're going to miss someone.
Then, after you've changed accounts, it will presumably only be a matter of time until you start getting spam again. All it takes is one online purchase to a company that sells your address out to a bulk emailer, and you're back to square one.
Of course, the entire purpose of this site is to drive you towards evaluating, and possibly purchasing spam blocker software. However, there is another option that may offer some relief.
1. Setup a new email account with your existing ISP or another provider. A free email account hosted by Yahoo! or Gmail also works fine. Leave any e-mail filtering disabled for now.
2. Register a domain you like with an inexpensive registrar like Joker that supports email forwarding (specifically, make sure the provider allows for "catch-all" forwarding).
3. Setup catch-all forwarding on your new domain to point to your new email account. For instance – firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org all point to email@example.com
4. Setup your existing email account with an auto-responder explaining your new email address is "something at jacksnewdomain.com." Yes, you want to spell it out like that, just in case some email processing software picks up the account and tries to add it to their new list. If your existing provider can't support setting up and auto-responder, you'll need to move it to another provider if possible.
5. Now, whenever you give out your account online, use a different variation of your address. When you order from Tim's Hobbies, give them firstname.lastname@example.org. If you start getting spam from that account, you know who's responsible, and you can just create a new "forward" to "nul" specifically for that account – acting as a spam stopper. Try to avoid ever giving anyone your "real" email account – always direct them to your forwarding domain.
The main remaining problem is with well intended people who inadvertently sign up your "main alias" for crap. A possible solution is to give everyone you know a different email address, and then address the issue on an individual basis if it comes up.