Spam e-mails are known to be the modern day version of junk mails. Usually e-mails from individuals or companies advertising their product or services, they are relatively harmless.
However, the increasing use of networks have made spammers smarter. With losses of about $20 billion in productivity and expenses, several IT companies saw the increasing demand for spam solutions.
Here are some of the features that could be helpful in choosing the “ideal” spam filtering subscription.
There are two important things to look for in evaluating a particular spam filtering subscription. This would be – accuracy and false-positive rating. Accuracy refers to the percentage of legitimate e-mails that make it to the user’s inbox after being filtered. The accuracy of several spam filtering subscriptions are tested by “passing through” thousands of e-mails. Some of these e-mails are legitimate while some are spam. The satisfactory rating for accuracy is 80% though some subscriptions have ratings as high as 98%.
False-positive rating refers to the percentage of legitimate e-mails that have been wrongly identified as spam. The satisfactory rating for a false-positive is 1%.
Usually, spam filter providers use quarantine features in order to avoid important e-mails from being disposed. The user may then sort the important e-mails from the spam. Different computer publications such as PCWorld and PCMagazine offers reports on the accuracy and false-positive ratings of different spam filtering subscriptions.
Most internet service providers (ISP) and e-mail programs such as MSN Hotmail, Microsoft Outlook and Yahoo! Mail provide a certain type of spam solution. If looking for a separate spam filter, try to know first if it works with several e-mail programs. A particular spam filter may work with Microsoft Outlook but not with Mozilla’s Thunderbird.
The cost of spam-filtering subscriptions has to be gauged with the services it provides. A certain subscription may be expensive but may be worth paying for with its features, speed and control. Sometimes choosing a lower cost provider may mean paying more due to lost time and frustration from poor output performance.
A good spam filter should fit the specific needs of the subscriber. It should allow a great deal of control by offering a wide range of flexibility in configuration according to his/her policies. It would also be helpful if it provides automatic updates.
These are the main things to consider in fighting spam. Depending on the complexity of your situation more time could be spent in evaluating and comparing your options.