Jon Griffith | Do you publish your e-mail address on the web?

Do you publish your e-mail address on the web?

Do you publish your e-mail address on the web?

So do thousands of other people. Why is this a problem? It only takes a few minutes to scan an entire website for published e-mail address to use for mass spam marketing.

Does your broker publish your e-mail address on your website? Ask them to stop. The best method by which the general public has to contact you from your website is a “contact me” form. With a feature such as this, you will be able to prequalify the sender by presenting them with a few questions that will help you service them better. In addition, you’ll effectively hide your e-mail address from the automated scripts that are out there constantly harvesting e-mail addresses.

Tired of receiving spam? Quit publishing your e-mail address on the web. When was the last time you visited a website for a particular product and hunted for a sales-person’s e-mail address? Not likely. More than likely you were given an option to “contact us” or “contact me” by filling out a form.

Some common mistakes:

Plain Text
If your e-mail address is written out in plain text anywhere on any page of any website that is accessible without logging in, your e-mail can be harvested.

E-Mail Links
If you have a hyperlink with the mailto: structure built in, 1) you already have a problem because the site visitor may not be using a computer that has configured e-mail client such as Outlook Express, and 2) the e-mail address, while not visible to you, is embedded in the site’s code.

Best Practice
An e-mail form that accesses a server side script that protects your actual e-mail address from the world.

“But I want people to be able to contact me…” Yes, this is understood, but the entire purpose of a website is to deliver information to them and allow them to act on their own time, in the privacy of their own home, with a certain level of anonymity. Remember, the site visitor is smart enough to figure out that a “contact me” link next to your photo or on your website will in fact contact you.

If you are in need a custom solution for your website, let us know, we may be able to help you out.

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