How Do I Properly
Configure My Email Client?
Most email clients
such as Outlook, Netscape, and Eudora have built-in features designed
to help filter out spam. By properly configuring your particular email
client, you can effectively reduce the amount of spam emails that make
it through to your inbox. It should be noted that the spam filters included
with these clients are very simple and can be naive at times. When left
to work on their own, these features will usually only catch the most
obvious and glaring of spam emails. However, with some tweaking and a
few customizations, you can turn your email client into an effective spam
Here are some of the
things you can do to make your email client filter spam effectively:
- If you receive
numerous spams from a particular email address, you can configure your
email client to automatically dispose of all messages received from
this sender. In Outlook, you can simply right-click on the sender's
name or email address and add them to your "Junk Senders List."
In other email clients, you may have to actually create a filter for
this sender. This means you create a rule that states: if an email is
from "firstname.lastname@example.org" send
it to "garbage".
- If you receive
numerous spams that are not from the same sender, but contain advertisements
for the same website, product, or some distinctive promotional vocabulary,
you can create a filter for these specific strings of text. Simply make
a rule that will automatically trash any emails that contain "superproduct.com"
or "Tired of working for your money?" or "Amazing Miracle
Cure!" or whatever the common text may be.
- Create a filter
for dirty words and profanity. Specify a list of the words that you
would rather not have appear in emails, such as sexual, racial, or swear-words.
This is a more general filter that helps to eliminate a number of spam
emails for adult-content, racially charged, and other inappropriate
- Many spam emails
contain "unsubscribe" instructions, where you are offerred
the ability to take your name off of the mailing list. While it is not
advised that you follow these instructions, you can use this common
characteristic to filter out any messages containing it. Create a filter
for text like "To be removed" or "unsubscribe" or
"to stop receiving click here".
- Spam is often sent
using automated spamming software. Some of these spam software packages
feel the need to leave their signature on every email that they send.
When you receive an email that contains one of these signatures, create
a filter for that particular signature text. Make your filter search
for "Mailbomber 2.0" or "Spam's A'hoy 7.02" or whatever
the signature is and any future spams from that software will be eliminated.
- There are specific
words that are used in numerous spam messages. Many spams advertise
trendy or hot products that may be grey-market or of dubious legality.
Filtering for words like "Viagra" "Satellite Descrambler"
"College Diploma" and other common spam products can reduce
the amount of spam you receive. Another word to look for is "click."
Filtering for this word can eliminate almost 80% of the spams you receive.
- If you are receiving
an inordinate amount of spam, you may wish to take extreme measures.
In these cases, create a "White List" of
the people you want to receive email from (family, friends, business
contacts, etc.), and make your client send only these emails to your
inbox while sending all of your other email directly
to the trash.
Please note that these
filters are intended to maintain the usefulness of your email account
by eliminating useless spam messages. If you make your filters too strict,
they will begin to eliminate emails that you actually want to receive.
Keep in mind the text that you would expect to receive from your contacts,
and make sure that your rules will not needlessly eliminate their messages
along with your spam.