For a spam-free e-mail box

Once spammers get your e-mail address, it's almost impossible to make them remove you from their list. The best way to avoid unsolicited messages, experts say, is to keep a low profile when surfing the Web.

1. Avoid chat rooms - spammers routinely "scrape" them for addresses.

2. Don't give out your e-mail address to a Web site unless you're sure its mailing list is secure.

3. If you are spammed, never hit "reply" and ask to be removed from a list. That only assures the spammer your address is good, and therefore salable.

4. Complain to the Internet service provider who is hosting the spammer. Even that, however, may not be effective, because many spammers falsify their e-mail addresses.

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