Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Spam, spam, spam, spam…

A common question is, “how do I stop spam emails?”.  Sadly, the answer is, “You can’t!”, but you can still do something about it!

You can’t block the email address it comes from because spammers keep changing that!  Chances are every spam email comes from a different address, and they can even pretend they’re coming from someone you know.

Your only hope is to use a spam filter.  Gmail already has one that’s pretty good and even if you don’t use Gmail, you can set things up so that it filters your existing account.
What you'd do is register for a (free) gmail account and then arrange that the gmail account collects your email from your normal provider.  In doing so Gmail's filters come into action.  You then arrange that you use your new Gmail account to either view the email online or download it to your favourite email program (eg. Thunderbird).

As an alternative and to keep things under your own control, check out spamihilator, a free program which learns what is spam and keeps it away.  It takes a while to train it as to what is spam and what isn't but gives lots of control, allowing you to set up 'friends' whose emails will never be blocked.  This, of course, only works if you're downloading email to your computer from a POP3 server.

Get in touch if you need help with any of these solutions.


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