Why Do I Get So Much Junk Email?

no-junk-mail-sign-resting-on-keyboard_0Junk email is the way of things. Advertising messages are the thing of the 21st century. There are suggestions that we see hundreds if not thousands of messages per day. I don’t know the actual number, but I read an interesting article trying to figure it out.

An interesting anecdote comes from Samuel Johnson, in 1759:
“Advertisements are now so numerous that they are very negligently perused, and it is therefore become necessary to gain attention by magnificence of promises, and by eloquence sometimes sublime and sometimes pathetic.”

My personal observation is that advertising style messages are so pervasive that we have been tricked into writing them ourselves, and posting them to our friends on Facebook. Take a look on social media and see how people are now attempting to mimic what they see from professional advertising to convince their “friends” of things.

Email is the easiest and cheapest way to deliver messages. There are no door slammed, no phone calls hung up on, and no unwanted replies. No matter what, you can’t retaliate against the spammers. The only way to win is to not receive the message. Filtering is generally the responsibility of the email host, or the ISP. Whoever controls your email server has the most control. That is, whoever controls the part of your email address after the ‘@’ symbol. That is where the filtering should happen.

If you have your own email domain (eg. me@mycompany.com) then the company that hosts your website and email is likely where you need to look to get improved filtering.

Junk email filtering (SPAM filtering) is a see-saw battle where people think of clever tricks to bypass the filters, and then the filters are updated to catch the latest clever tricks.

100% Helpdesk offers different levels of filtering depending on the needs of our clients, but all mail is filtered. Generally speaking, more than 90% of mail is rejected without you seeing it.

Junk email costs in productivity in two ways. It takes time to review and delete emails as they come in, but the more junk that is being deleted, the greater the chance of accidentally deleting a good email. Having effective filters that do the job does eliminate human error.

False positives in the filters do occur but are generally quite rare. Sometimes the filters will incorrectly flag an email as junk when it is not. Those messages are usually put into quarantine rather than being rejected because they have a lower “spam score.” Quarantined messages should be reviewed from time to time. Messages that are rejected outright will be reported to the sender. This helps protect you from lost messages. If the filter rejects a message, it will be returned to the sender. If it is quarantined, it will be held for your review.

If you are not sure of the filtering options you have, you can ask 100% Helpdesk to review your setup and make recommendations if needed.