How to recognize spam

KB Solution ID: KB144 |Last Revised: July 7, 2015


  • You have received a spam / fake ESET Users email list
  • Email, spamming, hoaxes and phishing explained
  • Information on how to recognize spam



Other possible names for these spam marketing emails include, users contacts, users records, users database and customer list.


Why am I being offered a spam/fake ESET Users email list?

ESET does not sell or offer any user information to other companies for marketing, including customer or guest email addresses.

It is possible that you may receive a message that is not correctly categorized as spam that claims to offer email lists of users from antivirus companies. These are spam marketing emails and do not contain actual user information.

For more information on how ESET handles data, see the ESET Privacy policy.


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Email, Spamming, Hoaxes and Phishing

Broadly categorized, spam includes unsolicited advertisements, hoaxes and proliferation of malicious software – malware. The inconvenience and danger to the user is increased by the fact that the costs of sending email are next to zero, and authors of spam have many tools and sources available to acquire new email addresses. In addition, the volume and variety of spam makes it very difficult to regulate. The longer you use your email address, the higher the possibility of it ending up in a spam engine database.

Some hints for prevention:

  • If possible, don’t publish your email address on the Internet
  • Only give your email address to trusted individuals
  • If possible, don’t use common aliases – with more complicated aliases, the probability of tracking is lower (an email alias is an alternate address that points to a user's existing email account)
  • Don’t reply to spam messages that have already made it into your inbox
  • Be careful when filling out Internet forms – especially be aware of check boxes such as “Yes, I want to receive information about ... in my inbox.”
  • Use specialized email addresses – for example, one for your work, one for communication with your friends, one for online purchases, etc.
  • From time to time, change your email address
  • Use an antispam solution such as ESET Smart Security's Antispam module.

How to recognize spam

Generally, there are a few indicators which can help you identify spam (unsolicited bulk emails) in your mailbox. If a message fulfills some of the following criteria, it is most likely spam.

  • The sender address does not belong to someone you recognize
  • You are offered a large sum of money, but you have to provide a small sum first
  • You are asked to enter, under various pretenses, some of your personal data – bank account numbers, credit card numbers, social security number, usernames and passwords, etc.
  • The email is written in a foreign language
  • Product advertised is far below the retail price
  • Some of the words are misspelled in an attempt to trick your spam filter. For example, "viagra” may be written as “vaigra”, etc.
  • Inclusion of large blocks of text or images

If you do decide to purchase a product advertised in an unsolicited email message, please verify that the message sender is a reliable vendor.

To learn more about email security, visit the ESET blog


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