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    Q495: What is spam / junk email?

    Spam email is unsolicited and unwarranted junk email that is usually sent out in bulk to a recipient list for the purpose of selling the recipient goods or services such as; multi-level marketing schemes, get-rich-quick schemes, work at home schemes or questionable products.

    Spammers have developed software that trawls web pages looking for any text that contains the @ symbol as it is assumed to be an email address. The software lifts the content and later uses it for mass spam emailing.

    Spam software can give the impression that the email is in reply to something you have sent by having a subject line starting with RE: or it can appear to be from a named person, for example John Smith. You are more likely to open one of these e-mails but if you not recognise the e-mail address, DO NOT open the e-mail as this could infect your computer with a virus.

    These emails are often from scammers trying to steal your identity by gaining access to your personal information in order to steal money and is known as 'phishing'. For more information on this and please see the website in related information.

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