Congratulations – you’ve just won the lottery! That’s the Nigerian lottery you’ve won for the 3rd time this week. Perhaps the prize winnings can fund the release of a kidnapped Prince or maybe the money can be added to the 1 million euro’s you’ve just received… or possibly your spam business solutions should have blocked these ridiculous emails reaching your inbox!
Spam email is a daily occurrence and the effort to reduce it via spam filtering solutions is usually effective, although some spam still manages to trickle through. Spam filtering works by software scanning emails and scoring them in a number of ways. This scoring process will look at the content of emails, searching for keywords such as ‘viagra’. It will then investigate the sender address to see if it’s a likely spam sender. Once the scoring process is complete the email will then go through more vigorous analysis to estimate whether it’s likely to be spam or a legitimate email
Spam filtering solutions generally come in 3 different styles:
- A hosted spam solution, whereby spam never reaches your computer or network. With this solution, emails are scanned and scored on a server hosted in the cloud. This ensures your network and internet connection isn’t bogged down with pointless junk email.
- A server software solution, this is software that’s installed directly onto your network, either on its own server or the company email server. It scans every email coming in and filters spam before they reach your Inbox
- Email client solution, this is software that sits on your computer and scans your email client for spam. It’s the least secure of the 3 as by this time, the spam has reached your email and computer anyway.
Sometimes distinguishing between spam and poorly written emails can be difficult and spam filters will flag legitimate emails as spam, these are called false positives. On the flip side, some spam emails that are cleverly written and sent from recently hacked email servers can sneak through the even the best anti-spam solutions.
The amount of spam sent daily is on the rise; a single computer with the slowest internet connection still has the potential to send over 100,000 emails a day. Once you factor in high speed internet connections, botnets and masses of hacked email accounts, the volume of spam that can be sent in a day reaches incredible proportions.
Investing in a good anti-spam solution will reduce the likelihood of viruses and receiving excessive spam. Always be wary of emails from unknown senders, never click web links or open attachments in spam emails. The majority of links and attachments in spam emails contain malware and link to web sites that are fake versions of real sites. These are designed to trick the user into entering their log in information. This personal information is then stored and you’ll usually be redirected to the real site without even knowing. This process is called phishing, scammers use phishing to hack into internet accounts and retrieve further personal details.
We are independent advisers and can offer guidance on many types of anti-spam solutions, please find more details on our it support Sussex page.