Everything You Need To Know About Spam

Untitled-8The world’s most hated unsolicited electronic messages as known as Spam come with many forms such as email fraud/phising, marketing or advertising email, and bomb email. Whatever the form is, we are sure it’s not something you want to see on your computer in the morning.  Then why does your “good” email go into the spam folder? Let us dig deeper into spam world to find out how to fight spam.

Why my email is classified as spam?

We cannot hold every incoming emails, but we can minimize spam by using filtering. Spam filters are generally made with three things:

1.       Email Clients:

Generally, email filtering can be integrated in Mail app, Thunderbird, Postbird, Outlook, etc.

2.       Server:

The server admin makes certain category. Email analyzed by the server based on key words or ratings. The system will read whether the email contains spam or not e.g. from the email subject contains promotion or advertising words, or the header contains selling or promotions.

E.g.: https://spamassassin.apache.org

SpamAssassin is a mail filter which scans that classifies email to help tag/block unwanted email. This software is used to help block spam which your server admin, web hosting company or ISP configured to help you. Therefore your server admin could use this software based on those certain categories for analyzing incoming email.

3.       Global Spam Database such as Realtime Blackhole Lists (RBL).

This filtering works manually. As a user we must report the spam to the spam database. They will check the detail if the email broadcasted or personal. When the email was broadcasted then they will proceed with the right action.

When we send an email, it goes to mail server. From here filtering process occurs to stop email recognized as spam to be sent to client’s email (recipient). The same process also applies when we pull incoming emails into our inbox. If the email recognized as spam, it will be retained at the mail server and not passed it on to us.

There is also a Domain Name System Blacklists, also known as DNSBL’s or DNS Blacklists, which are spam blocking lists that allow a website administrator to block messages from specific systems that have a history of sending spam.If the server admin of a DNS Blacklist has in the past received spam of any kind from a specific domain name, that server would be “blacklisted” and all messages sent from it would be either flagged or rejected from all sites that use that specific list.

The three basic components that make up a DNS Blacklist:

1. A domain name to host it under
2. A server to host that domain
3. A list of addresses to publish to the list.

We could use the following sites for checking if we are in the blacklist or not:

– http://www.dnsbl.info

– http://www.sorbs.net/lookup.shtml

– http://www.spamhaus.org/rokso/

How Spam Filtering Works

Every Internet network that chooses to implement spam filtering makes a policy decision for incoming email. The receiver makes the choices on whether to use spam filter, which one to use, and what to do with an incoming email if the email message’s IP Address is “listed” on the blacklist.

What if an important email is recognized as spam by mail server?

IP address or sender can be included in white list, then proceed to recipient’s Inbox mail.

Why is my IP blocked although it wasn’t sending spam?

A.  There is a possibility from a broadcaster computer used for promotion or marketing purpose.

B.   There is a virus on the network.

What Should I Do If My Email Classified as Spam?

Contact your ISP to clean up your IP reputation. If it was virus, ask for virus removal. If it was used for marketing purpose, ask for white list from the server provider and make sure there is an unsubscribe option on your email.

Newsletter April

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