Small Business Tips
Cut Spam Out of Your Diet
How to Stop Spam (and Viruses) at the Door
Spam is like an uninvited houseguest with a runny nose. Both take time away from what you'd rather be doing and can bring viruses into your domain.
Spam is a problem for everyone. According to the Cisco 2008 Annual Security Report, spam—or unsolicited bulk email—accounts for roughly 90 percent of email sent, or nearly 200 billion messages each day. Spam wastes employees' time. And when it carries viruses or links to phishing websites, spam can take down your network and result in stolen passwords and information theft.
Fortunately, you can now find cost-effective firewall appliances that stop spam, viruses, and phishing at the door, without blocking legitimate email in the process. Or you could try to stop spam with an antispam service.
At Your Service?
If you subscribe to one of the stop-spam services offered by an Internet service provider, beware their limits:
* ISP services typically have a poor "catch rate" for spam because image- and PDF-based spam slips through the filters.
* The ISP cannot determine whether a to: email address is legitimate before forwarding email. This lets spammers execute directory-harvest attacks, which involve sending thousands of emails to guessed addresses.
* They don't protect against misdirected bounce-back messages (return-to-sender receipts), which clog inboxes when a spammer uses an employee's email address to send spam, some of it to nonexistent addresses.
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