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So far I have owned a Google profile since 2016, and I had no problems until now when I began detecting unusual/bizarre messages in my 'Spam' folder.

This suspects me that operating a social networking account (e.g., Twitter), which I did back in August, also puts your email open to spam. Earlier today I got a weird message in my 'Spam' folder from some stranger with the heading 'BUSINESS INQUIRIES', along with an attachment leading to a Word document. Since I hardly knew Word attachments might contain Macros, I simply deleted it from my Gmail. I have had similar emails, some which have links or otherwise nothing.

For most of us it's hard to tell if each social media platform's user database is not completely secure, i.e., is easily accessible by the general public so that anyone can read and use that information, but not everyone (especially experts) is aware of this since it's basically a myth. However if I knew what would happen after joining a social media platform and were to run into issues related to spam/phishing, then I probably should bring the attention to all.

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  • Honestly, this could be anything. From a stolen database to someone else's contact list that you are part of that got stolen.
    – Jeroen
    Sep 20, 2021 at 22:17

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You are using different terms: phishing and spam. But you just need to use a better term: email.

Does having an email address open you up to receiving unsolicited emails?

Yes.

There are tons of "lists" from different sources that list valid emails. Just having been in someone else's contact list could get your email on such lists. Or, an automated process was trying random email addresses.

If your email is public, in any way, be it via social media, through normal email use, or through a breach, you will get unsolicited email.

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  • Hmm... then if social's the case why would I find it unusual that one's address is not publicly visible on Twitter but other users are still able to retrieve and use it to send unwanted messages? To be exact and clear, it should have been kept encrypted so that I did not have this issue, but this was an ultimate failure when I made a pitiful decision to join a social platform and now others can read my info unsecure. :\
    – DanPin
    Sep 21, 2021 at 2:20
  • I investigated and began to suspect I had the options enabled by default to have anyone find me by email/phone. I tried disabling the two, but after a good while it was not proven effective. I suspect not all account databases are stored securely, so better take that into consideration.
    – DanPin
    Oct 27, 2021 at 22:47
  • I changed the password of my Google account to see if that'll make any difference, but unfortunately, after several days it didn't as I found a suspicious email in my spam folder. I deleted it, however.
    – DanPin
    Dec 2, 2021 at 18:05

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