Internet users are all too familiar with email spam, or "junk mail." We constantly fight to stop spam using spam filter and spam blocker techniques, in conjunction with an anti spam software known as SpamAssassin.
- Gartner analysts predict that, left unchecked, spam will comprise more than 50% of corporate email by 2004.
- The Ferris Group claims that, in 2003, corporations will incur $10 billion in total costs concerning and related to spam.
Why do we at BCN especially care to fight spam? Simple. We hate it.
- Before installing our anti spam protection software blockers, filters and killers, some individual BCN staff members would receive over 500 useless, unwanted messages a day! Deleting these was a grueling, time-consuming task.
- Our #1 reason for hating spam? Spam is the single biggest resource hog on all BCN servers for both bandwidth and system resources. Faceless bulk mail marketers forge sending addresses causing hundreds of thousands of messages to get queued up, the recipients of which do not even exist!
After a long search, BCN chose SpamAssassin which is now a part of the CPanel hosting package to tag mail suspected of being spam and use it in conjunction with other techniques to block and virtually eliminate spam mail to our clients. It is a free service that is included with all hosting accounts.
SpamAssassin uses numerous spam-identification tactics including:
- header analysis: spammers use a number of tricks to mask their identities, fool you into thinking they've sent a valid mail, or fool you into thinking you must have subscribed at some stage. SpamAssassin tries to spot these.
- text analysis: again, spam mails often have a characteristic style (to put it politely), and some characteristic disclaimers and CYA text. SpamAssassin can spot these, too.
- blacklists: SpamAssassin supports many useful existing blacklist databases, such as mail-abuse.org, ordb.org and others.
- Razor: Vipul's Razor is a collaborative spam-tracking database, which works by taking a signature of spam messages. Since spam typically operates by sending an identical message to hundreds of people, Razor short-circuits this by allowing the first person to receive a spam to add it to the database -- at which point everyone else will automatically block it.
- Complete list of the tests that SpamAssassin currently performs.
So now that your incoming mail is being tagged as *****SPAM***** what do you do with it? That is up to you. The reason we do not altogether bounce spam messages or totally eliminate them is because sometimes a real message does get improperly labeled as spam - and that message could be important!
Any good POP3 mail client software, like Outlook or Eudora, will let you setup rules concerning what to do with your messages. Simply set one up to automatically delete your tagged messages.
Take a 100% risk-free trial of our shared hosting services for 14 days. No payment is necessary, we believe that strongly in our service! Let us show you why.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us.
Related Links (laws, filters, blockers, software protection, etc):
spam.abuse.net - our favorite anti spam web site
CAUCE - Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial Email
SpamAssassin - the great spam protection software we employ
Spam Laws - worldwide spam laws
Spam Brigade - Massachusetts-specific unsolicited email laws