Posted by Ray Majoran
One of the things that we’ve been hearing a lot from our users lately is, “Is there a way that I can limit the amount of spam that I get to my inbox?” The answer is of course, yes, however today we have implemented a new policy that should make the lives of our users a lot easier.
First, let me quickly review the old model: When a spam message is received, its Subject Line is prefixed with “[SPAM]”. If you wanted to filter out your spam, you would do one of two things:
- Create a rule in your webmail that takes any messages with “[SPAM]” in the prefix and deletes them, or
- Create a rule in your mail client (i.e. Outlook) that takes any items with “[SPAM]” in the prefix and moves them into your Trash Can.
The advantage of this model is that you can filter through your Trash Can in the case that you feel you missed a message because of a false-positive spam catch (which is about 0.01% of the time). The obvious disadvantages to this model are:
- Unless you choose to delete your spam at the server level, there is the possibility of a) having to download a ridiculous amount of messages, and b) viruses hitting your computer because spam is not “totally blocked”.
- In the case that you haven’t setup any rules on the server or in your mail client, you have to filter through all of your spam mail, just to find your regular email.
- If you forward mail to another account (i.e. gmail.com, bell.ca, hotmail.com, etc.), the spam gets forwarded as well, which frankly ticks them off (the ISP that you’re forwarding it to).
Recently, because of this practice we were blacklisted from a few servers and are now left trying to convince them that we are not a spam house! :)
So let me introduce you to the new model: From now on when we receive a message with an extremely high probability of spam, we will delete it. It will never make it to your inbox! Any mail that our system classifies as Bulk Mail will be prefixed with “[BULK]” and relayed to you. Additionally, any mail that “could” be spam (but probably isn’t) will still be forwarded to you as usual.
Here are the protocols we are using:
- We employ CommTouch and iPSwitch for our Premium Spam filter.
- We verify mail against two blacklists: SpamHaus and SpamCop
If all of our protocols approve the message, we let the mail through.
In the case that you do not receive an email from a person that you were expecting it from, here are the steps to take:
- Have them contact the company (ISP) that they send email through to verify that they are not on any blacklists, particularly SpamCop and SpamHaus. If you’re not convinced, you can check out their SMTP server for yourself at the SpamCop/SpamHaus websites.
- As a last resort, submit a ticket to our Support Desk and we will check our network logs to find out where/why the message was blocked.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We believe that this is the right solution going forward and is in the best interest of all our users.