Whether you like it or not, spam is an issue that everybody with an email address deals with. Thankfully there are spam filters for just about every email platform and they do a pretty good job. However, sometimes one gets through or on the opposite end of the spectrum, a legit email will get sent to the spam folder by mistake. By checking your spam settings you can ‘train’ your spam folder into catching everything, and not taking any legit emails by mistake.
How Spam Filters Work
Depending on the email platform you use there are a couple different ways that the spam filter works. The most common filters scan the actual content of the email. If the content matches the criteria set up, by you or by default, then the email is sent to the spam folder. Another type of filtering is by scanning the subject lines and headers of the email. Again, if these match the criteria, it is sent to the spam folder.
Why Spam Filtering is Important.
Filtering out spam is more than just not wanting to get emails about winning the lottery in some country you’ve never been or receiving an inheritance from some uncle you don’t have. It is about the safety of your computer and network that you are on.
Allowing spam into your inbox can cause for complete shutdowns of your computer, and possibly your network. Not only that but it can cost money, time, productivity and much more damage than you might think.
By taking some time and setting up your spam filter settings the best you can, you can avoid almost all spam and potential threats.
Training Your Spam Filter
Training a spam filter is not something that comes up much as it kind of sounds weird but, it is pretty easy and can make a huge difference in the emails that get blocked.
- Block Senders. Blocking the actual senders of the spam emails will help your filter out in giving it more criteria to look for when scanning emails. Depending on your email platform it’s as easy as right clicking and choosing ‘block sender’. One thing you should be aware of, is to not click the unsubscribe button on spam emails. A trick that many spammers are using now is just sending emails to mass email addresses whether they are subscribed to a service or not. By clicking the unsubscribe button you may not actually be unsubscribing, but giving permission to send you emails.
- Creating Rules. Creating rules is similar to blocking a sender, but you are able to have better customization. Most email platforms have this option and it is fairly simple to set up.
- Whitelist. On the other end of the block sender option is whitelisting. If you see that some legit emails are getting sent to spam you can add the sender’s to a whitelist. This tells your spam filter that these emails are ok and that you trust the person or company sending them.
Just going into your spam folder and doing these three things will make a huge difference in both the amount of spam you receive and the way your filter works.
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