Smart Consumer: How can I stop all this junk mail?
Published 15/04/2010 | 05:00
Q Laura from Dublin contacted Smart Consumer about the junk mail her mum is receiving.
Laura writes that "mum is getting tonnes of these 'you've won €1m' type letters in the post on a daily basis". "She has responded to some of these so that in turn has generated more of these letters.
"I've been on to An Post but they can't help. Do you know how one stops these?" she asks.
A This must be very frustrating. It is true that if someone responds to these letters they can be on a so-called 'suckers list' and start getting mailings from other con artists, so chances are she will keep getting more.
However, I'm afraid it's unfortunate but there isn't a lot you can do.
There is a service run by the Irish Direct Marketing Association that you can sign up to that stops unwanted junk mail. You can fill in the form at www.idma.ie.
However, this only covers mail coming from Ireland and won't stop unwanted post from overseas, where I'm sure most or all of your mum's letters originate from. You should sign up to that anyway but it isn't a total solution.
Really I'm afraid the only other thing you can try is to put a sign saying 'no junk mail' up on your door.
The best way of avoiding getting more of this sort of mail is never to respond, but instead just bin them.
Do tell your mum that these are bogus and remind her that if you haven't entered anything how can you win and that real lotteries never ask for upfront payment of administrative or other charges.
If readers have any other ideas or tips on stopping this, let us know.