Online Safety Lab III

CS 102

Sept. 26, 2003


This lab will help us discover:

  1. How pervasive e-mail spam is, what tools are available for blocking it, and what you can do to limit your exposure to it.

  2. How long it can take to clear your name once your identity has been stolen, how vulnerable we are to identity theft, the importance of examining your credit reports once a year for signs of identity theft, and what you should do if you become a victim of identity theft.

A side aim of this lab is to sharpen you search skills on the Web. In some cases, this lab leads you to a specific Web site, but you may have to dig around to get the information you need. In other cases, you may have to use the Google search engine.


  1. Visit --- E-mail Spam at
    ( use the HTML version of this lab handout, available on the class Web site, so you don't have to type this long Web address) and answer these questions:
    1. What was the largest number of spam e-mails blocked by America Online in a single day in 2002?

    2. Is there any free spam-blocking add-on software that can be used to improve the spam-blocking capabilities of Outlook? How easy is the free software to use?

    3. Does add-on spam-blocking software work with Web-based e-mail services such as Hotmail?

    4. If you want to limit the amount of spam you receive, what are the three most important mistakes to avoid?

  2. Visit --- Identity Theft at
    and answer these questions:
    1. If your identity is stolen, how long will it take to clear your name?

    2. As far as identity theft goes, are Washington, D. C. and Maryland safe places to live?

    3. Residents of what seven states are entitled to receiving a free annual credit report from each of the three big credit bureaus?

    4. What should you do if you become a victim of identity theft?

Thomas P. Kelliher
Thu Sep 25 08:55:14 EDT 2003
Tom Kelliher