One of the latest trends in online marketing directly targets a user via their internet service provider.  This method is a variant of advert spam that is taking a tremendous toll on both users and service providers across the World Wide Web.  It works by displaying an unsolicited pop-up window in the middle of a user's screen.  Beneath this pop-up exists the actual spam message.

Targeting your Windows operating system

Though it has some of the same characteristics, IP spam is unlike the kind that floods a user's email or simple pop-up ads.  IP spam can irritate a user whether they are signed onto the internet of not.  These spammers typically seek out operating systems running versions of Microsoft Windows 98, XP, NT, 2000.  They have found vulnerabilities in the Windows Messenger application, realizing that unsolicited messages can be delivered to anyone with a network connection.

IP spam is growing at an alarming rate.  The Windows Messenger application that comes included with software for the operating system has given spammers a way to distribute millions of message on a daily basis.  Unlike other forms of spam, the sender does not need details of a user's email account or any other pertinent information - all they need as an IP address.  Once locking in, they have the ability to flood a user's computer with tons of annoying IP message spam.   

The burden of spam on IPs

Any type of spam is an obvious inconvenience to the user and the internet service provider whose image may be tarnished for allowing these intrusive messages to pass through.  It also affects an IP by increasing operational costs.  These spam messages require disk storage space and bandwidth in order to be sent and received. 

The more messages that are sent out, the more bandwidth required to handle the activity.  Regardless if they are opened or not, the messages will typically be stored somewhere.  At the same time, an IP must be able to reassure customers that they will be able to send and retrieve messages without disruption, regardless of rising spam percentages.  When bandwidth and disk storage become a problem, a user may suffer directly in regards to their web surfing experience, which is liable to become significantly slower.          

Spam also affects an internet service provider with what is known as a false positive.  This may cause an entire IP to have their address blocked or blacklisted if there is a high amount of spam originating from it.  Something of this nature would prevent legitimate customers from sending and receiving messages.  Removing themselves from a blacklist will cost an IP valuable time and possibly more in fees.  The worst impact spam can have on an internet service provider is the loss of clients.      

While spam is surely an annoyance for the recipient, it can prove to be an absolute nightmare for an internet service provider.  At this time, there are no set laws put in place to regulate unique forms such as IP spam.   The best way for the end user to limit this activity is with the aid of advanced software designed to fight this specific type of spam.  

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Identity theft comes in many forms.

A person\92s identity can be 'borrowed' for the purpose of creating fictional credit cards or a person\92s entire identity can be usurped to the point where they can have difficulty proving that they really are who they claim to be.

Up to 18% of identity theft victims take as long as four years to realize that their identity has been stolen.

There are many ways to protect your personal identity and many steps you can take to prevent your identity from being stolen:

*Never give out unnecessary personal information
*Never provide bank details or social security numbers over the Internet
*Always remain aware of who is standing behind you when you type in your personal credit codes at ATM machines and at supermarket checkout swipe machines.