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E-mail Security

What is spam?

"Spam" is unwanted, unsolicited commercial e–mail.

Why do I receive spam?

You receive spam because the primary goal of a spammer is simple — to make money. Sending spam is cheap and the returns can be very lucrative. It is estimated that 4.7 million Americans have made purchases from spam messages received in their inbox . The more messages the spammers can deliver to inboxes, the greater chance the recipient will click on the message and make a purchase.

How can I help reduce spam?

  • Do not purchase anything from spam messages. Simply delete the message without opening it.
  • Help Charter identify spam by reporting the spam message appropriately. If you are using Charter’s webmail service, select the message and click the “Junk Mail” button.

    email spam example 1

    After clicking the “Junk Mail” button, a confirmation message will appear. Click “Report as Junk” to complete the action.

    email spam example 2

  • If you are using a mail client such as Outlook or Outlook Express, consider using a spam filtering program.
  • Report spam to the Federal Trade Commission, spam@uce.gov. Be sure to include the full e–mail headers.
  • Many security suite programs such as the Charter Security Suite™ include an anti-spam feature to help block unwanted e–mail messages.

How does Charter help me avoid spam?

Charter helps block spam by using anti–spam filters. These special devices utilize optical character recognition (OCR) to filter out messages that contain key words, phrases, and images commonly found in spam. Charter blocks approximately 150 million spam messages per day from reaching our customers.

In addition to using anti–spam filters, Charter offers to its customers the Charter Security Suite™. The Charter Security Suite™ is a full featured security suite with built–in spam control. To learn more about the Charter Security Suite™ click here.

What is an e–mail hoax?

An e–mail hoax is an e–mail message that attempts to trick or deceive the recipient into forwarding the message by creating a sense of urgency or with a promise of rewards. E–mail hoaxes often contain request to "Send this message to everyone you know" or some version of that statement. Other examples of e–mail hoaxes include: chain letters, bogus virus information, free gift certificates, etc.

What should I do if I receive an e–mail hoax?

It is recommended that you refrain from passing on chain letters, jokes, and rumors. The best practice is to simply delete the message. Passing along hoax messages waste time, bandwidth, system resources, and inconvenience thousands of people.

Where can I find more information on the latest e–mail hoaxes and false alerts?

The following pages contain information on new e–mail hoaxes and false alerts:

What is e–mail spoofing?

"Spoofing" is when someone forges the headers of e–mail messages to falsify the origin of the e–mails. Spoofing is usually done when sending unsolicited e–mails, phishing attacks, and viruses.

What should I do if my e–mail address is being spoofed?

It’s unfortunate but if your e–mail address has been spoofed — short of obtaining a new e–mail address — there is little you can do. If you do not want to create a new e–mail address, you can create a filter or rule for your inbox to delete the unwanted messages. You can also attempt to identify the party that has spoofed your e–mail address by reading the e–mail headers and contacting the responsible ISP that the unwanted messages are being sent from. This process can be very lengthy and frustrating. Chances are you will only be able to identify machines that are compromised and not the responsible party.

What is phishing?

"Phishing" is a form of Internet fraud that utilizes spoofed e–mails to lead the recipient to a fake website. The fake website is designed to trick the recipient into disclosing financial information such as credit card numbers, account usernames, passwords and social security numbers. To view an example of phishing scams aimed at Charter customers, click here.

What should I do if I receive a phishing e–mail?

If you received a spoofed e–mail claiming to be from Charter Communications, do not alter the e–mail and forward the e–mail in its entirety, including e–mail header information to phishing@charter.net. If you received a spoofed e–mail claiming to be from a company other than Charter Communications, do not alter the e–mail and forward the e–mail in its entirety to the company that is being phished. Most organizations have information on their website about where to report abuse. Also, forward the phishing e–mail to the Federal Trade Commission, spam@uce.gov and the Anti-Phishing Working Group, reportphishing@antiphishing.org.

For more informatin regarding phishing, visit:

What should I do if I responded to a phishing e–mail?

Responding to a phishing e–mail may or may not lead to Identity Theft. However as a safety precaution, contact the three credit reporting bureaus and place a fraud alert on your credit report.

Initial fraud alerts last for 90 days and each credit reporting agency has established nationwide toll–free number for reporting.

Equifax: 1-800-525-6285
Experian: 1-888-EXPERIAN (888-397-3742)
TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289

Placing a fraud alert with the credit reporting agencies entitles you to a free copy of your credit report. Review your credit report carefully and look for suspicious activity. Also, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. The complaint form for the FTC can be found by clicking here.

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Rockbridge Associates, Inc. (2005, February) 2004 National Technology Rediness Survey.

†Charter Security Suite is available at no additional cost for Charter Internet Plus and Ultra customers. Charter does not guarantee data will be secure.

All marks belong to their respective owners. The links in this article are to Internet sites maintained by third parties, no inference or assumption should be made and no representation may be implied that either Charter or its affiliated entities operates or controls in any way any information, products or services on these third party sites.

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