Question about spam

Is there any connection between the spam one receives, and the web sites one has frequented?

To be more specific: if you get porn spam, is that a dead giveaway that you’ve been on a porn site?

On the other hand–I receive spam for both breast enlargements and penis enlargements, so it would seem that spammers aren’t too fussy.

To your specific question - no.

My seven year old daugther’s email account gets plenty of porn spam. She has her own machine, and has never been online without my constant supervision. I know that machine has NEVER visited a porn site. But she gets plenty of offers to lengthen her penis.

There may be a connection between visiting porn sites where you have entered your email address, and porn spam. But it certainly isn’t the only reason.

And btw, I have an email account I setup for my wife over a year ago. It has not received a single bit of spam. The difference? Mainly that her account is setup under a very rarely used or noted domain. My daughter’s account is setup under And while her is user name isn’t particularly common, it is apparently common enough to make the spam lists.

If you simply visit a site, without filling out any forms containing your email address, there’s no way for the site operator to send you spam. They can certainly have your IP address, but unless they intend to gain access to your computer, there’s little they can do with it. No legitimate ISP will give out email addresses or other personal information, unless a law enforcement agency requests such information directly. Indirectly, however, they can trick you into giving them your email address. A common trick is to put a cookie on your computer. Using various means, they might get you to navigate to a harmless looking, non-porn site offering, say, to put you on an newsletter subscription for new products or whatever. This site is, of course controlled by the porn site operators. It has read your cookie and knows you’ve been to the porn site. If you fill out the form to subscribe to the newsletter – bang! – you’re on the porn list too. There’s a lot of ways sites can track your interest and get you to give out your email address.

Actually, there are ways to harvest your email address depending on your browser and its settings. You should not personalize your browser with anything remotely close to anybody’s valid email address. Use a jibberish username and jibberish domain.

Oh yeah, I forgot about that. I never personalize my browser with any real information.