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Spam Blocking Services

Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
I have finally become so sick of spam that I am willing to spend some money to clean out my box. I am literally getting hundreds of spams a day. So I am going to sign up for a spam blocking service. I am talking about a service that gets all your emails and uses challenge/response and not a spam filter which I have and doesn't work.
Does anyone have experience with these services? Any recommendations?


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Jenny Brown
Greenhorn

Joined: Feb 01, 2004
Posts: 3
This isn't entirely what you're looking for, but some people may find it useful. SpamAssassin (free linux software - must be run on the server receiving your mail) catches about 98% of the spam sent to me and doesn't catch things it shouldn't. It takes the first pass at my mailbox. (Note, it is not trivial to set up - takes an experienced linux admin; but once it's in place it's great.) Then I use Thunderbird (free) from the Mozilla group as my mail client, which adds another layer of filtering. It catches most of the remaining spam, leaving me with a mostly clean inbox.
I don't know how this compares to commercial services out there. I wish you luck in finding a good one.
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 05, 2000
Posts: 13974
This isn't entirely what you're looking for...
Actually it isn't what I am looking for at all.
Examples of what I am talking about:
http://www.mailblocks.com
http://www.knowspam.net
John Smith
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 08, 2001
Posts: 2937
TP: I am literally getting hundreds of spams a day.
Same story here. I was thinking of using some spam-blocking software, too, but I suspect that with some aggressive blocking, I may miss some important emails. For now I am using a free Yahoo account, which has some spam-protection capabilities. It seems to work, but unfortunately, the flow of the new spam seems to equal the volume of spam blocked. I dunno, -- maybe setting a new email account is the best option.
Marilyn de Queiroz
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9047
    
  10
Originally posted by Eugene Kononov:
...but I suspect that with some aggressive blocking, I may miss some important emails.

On the other hand, when I get 300 spam email messages per one important email, the important email risks getting thrown out with the hundreds of spam ones. Especially if the subject is blank or "hi" or it has an attachment and I don't recognize the sender.
[ February 02, 2004: Message edited by: Marilyn de Queiroz ]

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Marilyn de Queiroz
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9047
    
  10
By the way, are the google ads on this thread helpful?

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[ February 02, 2004: Message edited by: Marilyn de Queiroz ]
John Dunn
slicker
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 30, 2003
Posts: 1108
www.onebox.com
oh damn... does that constitute blatant advertising??? :roll: (I don't want to have to change my name again!)
no seriously, onebox.com gets rid of 95% of my spam. so it really isn't a big deal to delete the few I get. Of course onebox.com has a fee, but it is nice to have a secure steady email


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Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
I'm running a combination of a large blacklist on my mailserver (plus a smaller whitelist to poke some holes in it) in combination with Bayesian filtering on Outlook (Spambayes, look at sf.net).
Together (and I suspect Spambayes alone could do the job, but this way it saves me downloading several megabytes of email a day and generates nice bounce messages as well to the spammers or people with open relays) they stop some 99% or more of all spam.
The only false positives I've gotten in the last several months were a few new contacts who happened to be located at a blocked domain, a quick IM or IRC contact usually cures that (most people I communicate with I meet via message boards or IRC anyway so we know how to find eachother).
In time I might shut down the blacklist, but right now it's still blocking megabytes of wasted potential bandwidth each day so is serving a purpose (it the peak of the previous virus outbreak it blocked over a thousand viral emails a day, each averaging over 150KB in size, for a total of over 150MB of saved bandwidth per day for several weeks).


42
Dan Chisholm
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 02, 2002
Posts: 1865
Thomas,
Check out zero spam.
HS Thomas
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 15, 2002
Posts: 3404
Originally posted by Dan Chisholm:
Thomas,
Check out zero spam.

Is it normal to ask for the username and password of e-mail accounts ?
Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Depending on how the service works they will need it.
I guess they install a monitoring service that regularly (say once every ten minutes) logs into your email account and removes everything that looks like spam.
Personally I'd never use such a service as there is no guarantee that that's all they will do (they could indeed just as easily harvest all your incoming email for whatever dubious purposes, which will very likely include private information like addresses, phone numbers even credit information...).
 
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subject: Spam Blocking Services