Email Spam is prevalent in today’s Electronic World and impossible to stop. In fact, the only known way to completely stop spam is not using email. For those of us who need to use email, do we have any options? The short answer is no, and let me explain why.
Spam filters and Spam stopping software certainly exist, but the time spent training your filters and monitoring your spam folder is just as much, if not more, time consuming than simply deleting them out of your inbox. Spam filters find spam based on key words but key words can be manipulated to pass through a filter. Here is an example;
You can set your filter to catch any email with the word Viagra in it. But what about V1agra, vi@gra, viagr@, and so on. You can change one letter and now you can pass through the filter. So, to filter out any email containing the word Viagra we will need to come up with every variation possible, and this is just one word.
Then we must remember that a spam filter simply moves emails that are classified as spam to another folder, a spam folder. This folder still needs to be accessed, emails need to be looked at to make sure it did not accidently capture a wanted email, and then we will need to select all the emails and delete them. I have experimented with spam filters in Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows Mail, and Thunderbird, and have concluded it is more time consuming to set up filters, train the filters, and deal with the emails in the spam folder, than it is to simply delete them from my inbox.
Spam software can use filters to stop spam but some go a step farther and block known server addresses that are associated with spam. This software uses what is known as a spam server blacklist, literally a list of server addresses that are known to send out spam. This method of spam blocking is more effective than filtering, but is not an end all solution. The reason being is that another email server, with a different address being used, and much like an anti-virus program can only stop known viruses, and spam blocking system based on server addresses can only stop those that are known. With hundreds of new ones being created each day, it is impossible to stop them all.
Oberlin.net uses Barracuda to protect our members from any known viruses trying to attach themselves to emails. Barracuda is often referred to as a spam filter, but the filtering causes more issues than it fixes. For this reason, Barracuda is used primarily for detecting and quarantining known viruses and stopping blacklisted spam servers.
Oberlin.net provides Barracuda for free. Oberlin.net techs will help manage your user name and passwords. Oberlin.net techs will provide the settings needed to set up an email account on numerous devices and with numerous programs. Oberlin.net cannot provide any further assistance with spam blocking, setting up filters, or using spam blocking programs. We provide you with an email address, how you use it is up to you.
Here are some articles on managing spam,