How do I stop receiving spam?
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Spam or unsolicited bulk e-mail (UBE) can be very annoying and offensive. Spammers will use many unscrupulous methods to obtain your e-mail address so they can send you their message. The trick is to limit your exposure.
The first thing to remember is that you need to be conscious of where you publicly display your e-mail address. Is it on your web page, e-mail signature, or do you post messages in public forums? Spammers use automated programs to harvest e-mail addresses from these sources as well as others. Another recent method is to embed special information in HTML-formatted e-mail messages that returns your e-mail address to the sender.
The next thing to remember is to never respond to a spam message. Just delete it. Why? If you reply, you just told the spammer that "This is a valid e-mail address with an actual person behind it, so keep it on your list." Likewise, offers to delete you from the list are usually another ruse to validate their list.
Note that spam is not the same thing as e-mail bombing, which is a focused attack on your e-mail account and system.
How can I keep messages I send from being classified as spam by others?
Here are a few things you can do to reduce the chance that mail you send will be categorized as spam by another system:
- If sending a text message, send as text only, not HTML.
- Do not send messages in all UPPERCASE.
- Be careful to avoid frequently using words or phrases commonly used by spammers (ie. make money quick, viagra, lose weight, buy cheap ...)
- Do not use wallpaper (special backgrounds), HTML signature blocks, or rich text icons within your e-mail messages. Frequently anti-spam software will see these as spam-like, and increase the spam rating of your message.
- Be aware of the kinds of tests that are applied to classify spam. A good source is the SpamAssassin test set.
- Never forward unsolicited mail to others.
What causes a message to be quarantined?
The UW-Platteville Spam Firewall rates all e-mail messages that pass through it based on several criteria. E-mail messages that are clearly spam, contain viruses or worms, contain suspect URLs, or contain banned attachment types are automatically quarantined. E-mail messages that do not meet any of the aforementioned criteria are considered good and are allowed to pass through the system. If the system cannot make a determination of whether the message is good or bad, the message is held in quarantine until acted upon or aged out after 30 days..