Three Ways to Stop Instant Messenger Spam

Spammers are always inventing new ways of bothering you (of course), and one of the newer methods is instant messenger spam. Even if you are set to "Invisible" those pesky spam-bots still manage a way to spam you.

Here are a few ways to slow down (and possibly eliminate) it altogether.

Set Profile as "Adult", Remove from Directory Listing (Yahoo Instant Messenger)

Every Yahoo user has a profile. You can see yours at http://profiles.yahoo.com/your_user_name

  1. Go to profiles.yahoo.com/your_user_name
  2. Click Sign In and the top
  3. Login using the same username/password you use for the messenger
  4. Click View My Profiles at the top
  5. Click Edit next to your Yahoo ID (you probably only have one)
  6. Click Edit Profile Information on the next page
  7. On the bottom of the next page, CHECK Designate this profile as an ‘adult profile’ and UNCHECK Add this profile to the Yahoo Member Directory
  8. Click the Save Changes button below when finished

Setting your profile as "adult" will require anyone who wants to see it (including bots) to physically log in to Yahoo first; a good spam-bot deterrent.

Setting your profile not to appear in the Yahoo Member Directory will take your profile "off the radar", so to speak.

Set "Social" to "Just Me" (Windows Live / Hotmail / MSN)

Getting to this information requires you to jump thru several hoops, but here’s how you do it:

  1. Go to http://account.live.com
  2. Sign in with your Hotmail / MSN / Live e-mail address and password (which is the same as your messenger login)
  3. On the left sidebar, click Profiles
  4. On the next page click Edit your shared profile
  5. On the next page click Social (on the left)
  6. Next to Permissions click Anyone on the internet (Note: If it already states "People I choose" or "Just You" you don’t have to modify it and you’re done)
  7. Tick Just Me
  8. Click the Save button

Bot Sentry (Pidgin)

Pidgin is a cross-platform multi-protocol instant messaging client that connects to more or less every single kind of chat service on the planet.

Bot Sentry is, without question, the best anti-spam countermeasure for instant messaging. Nothing else comes close. This program will require any user not on your contact list to answer a predefined "Anti-Spam Question" first, such as "How do you spell the number 5?" If the question is answered incorrectly, you are never bothered.

This works on all chat services connected to with Pidgin.

Comments

  1. Justin Hitchborn (hitchface) says:

    Good tip. Was just talking to a friend about this kind of thing yesterday.

  2. Thank you. I’ll be bookmarking this for future reference.

  3. Thank you, good ideas. I hope it helps!

  4. Pidgin bot sentry says:

    pidgin bot sentry will still pop up the message has been blocked windows. So, everytime , it block some message.
    On average a day, i get this stupid popup show up for like 10 to 20 times.

    It is stupidly annoying. How can the developer don;t see that when people want to block the spam. It mean to block the pop up windows which pop up every now and then. People hate spam become it is bugging and bot sentry FAILED to deliver that toward user experience.

  5. “If the question is answered incorrectly, you are never bothered.”

    But you are — with MSN, anyway — since the spammers are not online to receive messages, you receive a popup staing that your message (apparently the bot sentry security question) could not be sent.

    So instead of the spam message itself, you see an error message that you need to then close. Not much of an improvement.

  6. If I have a “friend” on my yahoo instant messaging that I think has been hacking me, how do I stop it? About an hour after I accepted this so called friend, my computer started acting all wackey and opening up all kind of internet windows while I was working offline. I saved what information I wanted to and did a full system recovery. I reinstalled my Mcaffee but have not downloaded yahoo instant messenger yet. If I delete them from my contact list and block this person, do they still have access to my computer because they still have me on their contact list? I want to use my messenger again, but I am afraid to until I find out what I can do.

  7. Ok lory here’s what u do mcaffee suck u need zone alarm there’s a free version of it..just down load it..it will protect u from intruders next..what u did was good..u can still use your yahoo just go for a new account..name. the answer to your question is they already have your IP address that’s enough..but if you install what I told u they cant get to u..dont sign into your old email account

  8. DKAngel says:

    lol @ sheryl they can still get you you if they have had a virus installed zone alarm wont do squat

  9. Ernest N. Wilcox Jr. says:

    So update and run a virus scan. Then run one or more malware scans. You can choose from Windows Defender, AdAware, or Spybot – Search and destroy. These are free for personal use. I use them all here. Each finds things the others miss. Spybot Search and Destroy includes a service to safeguard the Windows Registry. If an attempt is made to altar the content in the registry, I get a pop-up warning in which I can choose to permit or block the change. There is one caveat, this service can be a bit of a nuisance when I install new software, so I disable it temporarily at such times (make sure to turn it back on after the installation is complete).

  10. Thanks for shared nice tips.

  11. i think its more to work nice.

  12. help……my bf says it was spam. I got to house and there was a message from a girl saying she was nude in front of her web cam. then it said offline at 11:13 which is when he left to pick me up. he is very into computers and stays up until4am a lot . Should I be suspicious or is it spam??????

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