All Customers - Someone is using my email address to send spam!

If someone is using your email address to send out junk mail (spam), odds are you are quite upset about this. The ramifications of having your email address forged by a spammer can range from mild annoyances to a full blown meltdown of your mailbox. The bad news is that there is almost nothing that can be done to stop this from happening. Based on the way email works on the Internet today, just about anybody can send any message using any email address they choose to use as the return address.

If this happens to you, it is important to note that this does not mean that your mailbox has been "hacked", broken into, or compromised in any way. A spammer does not need access to your actual mailbox or account information to forge your address. In fact, in most cases the spammer has no idea who you are. They are simply using your address because it has been harvested or is simply a common address (i.e. john@macconnect.com or jane@yourdomain.com). Often this is the result of viruses trying to spread themselves using the email addresses found in the address books of infected PCs.

There are several emerging technologies and network management practices designed to address this problem, however none are widely accepted or implemented at this time. In the next few years we are hopeful that the Internet community will begin to agree on a standard method for verifying who is sending a given email message, but for now you only have a two options:

1. Ignore it and do your best to accept that this is just part of the way the Internet is currently built.

2. Change your email address. This will not stop spammers from using your existing address when sending spam, but it will stop you from getting all the bounce messages and complaints. Of course, changing your email address means notifying your associates of your new address which can be time consuming. If you do choose to change your email address, just contact MacConnect support and we'll help you do that.

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