Headache-Free Spam Prevention

Posted October 25th, 2008 by kyle

By any measure, spam is a significant problem for email today. Having to wade through dozens or more spam messages in your inbox daily really hampers productivity. But thankfully it’s also easy to overcome this problem.

For personal email, GMail is the way to go, bar none. Since switching from Yahoo to GMail over 15 months ago, I have had a total of 3 spam messages make it to my inbox. Before that with Yahoo, I could expect to deal with several spam messages per day, and I’ve seen similar reports from Hotmail, Earthlink, and users of other email services.

GMail is free, has a large storage capacity, and is very reliable. It supports a web interface (which is actually pretty good, even for keyboarders), or if you prefer another email client, POP, IMAP, and email forwarding are also supported (and if you’re concerned about privacy, you can use these to pull down your mail [sans spam] and not retain on the server). It Just Works.

For corporate email, use an email service provider that offers virus scanning, greylisting, SpamAssassin, and Spamhaus SBL/XBL. In the past we used SpamBayes on the client side, which worked fairly well, but it needed constant training. Since enabling spam filtering features on our Pair.com web hosting account over a year ago, we have eliminated almost all spam from our inbox, and it requires no effort on our part once configured.

If your email provider doesn’t provide these services, another option may be to route your email through Google Apps.

My last choice would be a client-side solution (of which there are many, both open source and commercial). This is one case where a server-side solution is preferable whenever possible.

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One Comment on “Headache-Free Spam Prevention”

  1. Chaim Krause Says:

    I highly recommend tuffmail.com for a commercial email service provider. I have used them for year and they have extensive spam support. I am just a happy customer of both UR and Tuffmail.