Colin has been rapidly climbing the ranks at a small, hip clothing company. A recent promotion required him to relocate, which, combined with longer work hours, made meeting people difficult. One day an old friend convinced him to try out online dating, but the dating sites he found all required an email address to register and receive messages. Without reading any of the site's privacy policies, he signed up with his work email address.
"The next day I came into work, and was really stoked to see 17 new messages. I thought the sites had really worked!" Colin said. But as it turns out, most of the new messages were junk, and the spam only got worse. By the next week, Colin was getting around 300 messages a day. "It became hard to keep up with clients, because I had to wade through piles and piles of spam."
Eventually, the volume of spam to Colin's account began to slow down the entire company's email system. This caught the attention of the company's IT department. They had to change Colin's email address and install expensive anti-spam software on the main mail servers. When upper management found out about the trouble Colin had caused, he was lucky to keep his job. In hindsight, Colin says that he has learned his lesson. "Not only did I seriously hurt my chances for getting another promotion any time soon, I lost a lot of respect among my co-workers and clients. I guess this will teach me to be more careful about whom I give my email address to!"
To learn how to protect yourself from spam, see Email - Unsolicited Email