Protecting your email address from scammers and spam is like protecting your house from robbers and solicitors. Yes, your personal email is that important. Your personal email may not cost anything in terms of dollars, but your life will be a mess if anyone else obtains it and locks you out of it by changing the password. Most hackers know to change the password and the security answers, so you can't reset the password when you discover that you cannot log into your own email.
A personal email is connected to your financial institutions, all of your subscription-based services, your small business, your work email, your bills, and so much more. In fact, many people prefer to use emails rather than snail mail as it is faster and does not leave trash and clutter all over their home. That means if they are locked out of their personal email by a hacker, they have no way of getting it back, and all of their transactions and records are gone forever.
So you should treat your personal email as if it is a precious, invaluable asset to your life because it is. You would never give away your personal address or your car's registration number, so don't give away your personal email to anyone. There are a few precautions you can practice to protect your email inbox and keep it secure from malicious people.
Copy and save all of your contacts to a file. In the event that your personal email is hacked and you cannot get it back, at least you will have access to all of your contacts. It's best to keep your imported contacts in an Excel file. After you figure out that someone has stolen your personal email, it is best to send an email to all of your friends and family. Tell them that if they received any emails from you and the email asks for money or their personal information, that email is a scam.
Don't give it to anyone who asked for it. Most websites and apps require you to create an account if you want to receive all of the benefits of their service. While that does make sense, you don't want to give away your personal email to any website or app that asks for it. So what you should do is use temporary email service and use the temporary email when you first sign up. By doing this, you will be protecting your personal email, and you won't receive all of the spam emails from each website or service.
Use a personal email service that has a strong spam filter. Do not choose just any email service. You always want to choose one that has a strong spam filter and an anti-malware filter. These email systems automatically scan every email that is destined for your inbox and decide if it is spam or not. Then it properly organizes each email into the main inbox or the stem folder. The best email services that have spam and malware filters are Gmail and Hotmail.