By Katharine Swan On Monday, June 25, 2007 At 11:59 PM

A few days ago I warned about some interesting -- but no doubt malicious -- spam I got, which encouraged me to go to a suspicious site. I thought I should add to that warning a comment that I have had a lot of spammy messages come through on my contact forms lately (thank goodness I don't post my email address anymore!). These messages usually say something completely inane like "Nice site!" or nothing at all. I have no doubt that they are hoping I'll email them back saying "Who are you?" ... and then they'll add my email address to their list for spam mailings.

If you have a contact form like mine, beware -- these jerks seem particularly active lately. (Summer rush for them too, maybe?) If you don't have a contact form on your site, making your email address available instead, I suggest that you reconsider your "contact" options. At the very least, make sure that your email address doesn't include the @ symbol, as spammers use it to find and harvest email addresses online. Instead, you can insert the word "at" where the symbol would normally go (with spaces around it, of course, so that the whole thing is readable). You can also make the link say something totally different, such as "Email Me."

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Katharine Swan is a full-time freelance writer with more than 5 years of professional writing experience. In addition to maintaining several personal blogs, she writes a variety of online marketing materials for clients, including company blogs, articles, and press releases. In her free time, she spends time with her horse, reads, and writes fiction.

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