Infos on spam

Some basic informations: Emails are considered as spam if they are received unwanted. Furthermore, they contain commercials or bad software as viruses, worms, dial-up programs, and others, or links that lead to websites where you should enter your password for your mail-account for instance. Today, spam is considered as a real problem because it causes a lot of traffic and congests mailboxes. Filtering out spam-emails by hand costs time. 

Here are some informations and guidelines how  to prevent spam:

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    • All emails which are definitely identified as spam are blocked by our relays. This is the case, for instance, if the sending host is unknown by the Domain Name Service (DNS), i.e., the host is not registered, or the sending domain is unknown, or blacklists tell us that we cannot trust the sending party.
    • Spam filtering is active by default.
    • Some emails might pass the relays although they are marked as spam by an index. The higher this index is the higher is the probability of spam.
    • Mails with an index higher than 3.5 should be sorted out in separate folders, as experience shows. But it is not possible to automatically delete emails that have an index higher than a given standard (rejected by the IV commitee).
    • Users should check their spam folder frequently, because when the spam folder exceeds a specific limit, older (spam) mails are automatically deleted from the folder.

Statistics In October 2006 more than 1,2 million emails were sent to the University of Mannheim per day, including 1 million spam mails.

How to prevent spam? Unfortunately there is no 100% protection available. But if you follow these guidlines you will help yourself:

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    • Treat your email-addresses strictly confidential
      • Avoid telling everyone your email-address.
      • Avoid using your email-address for guestbooks or making a online purchase. Better use a second e-mail address provided by free e-mail services.
      • Avoid making your e-mail addresses public on every homepage.
      • Do not use your email-addresses for commercials as email greeting cards etc. Your address might be sold to someone else.
      • Avoid using an email-address that can be guessed by someone else.

    • If you receive spam, or any mails that seem to be spam
      • Never follow any links that you find in the email. In the best case, do not open the mail.
      • Never respond to spam mail as for complaining reasons, for instance. This only confirms that your e-mail address is valid to the sender.

    • Use a safe email-client and a safe computer
      • Better disable preview and automatically loading images in your mail client. If you enable these functions spammers will know that your email address is working.
      • Please use antivirus software (this is mandatory). It makes it much easier to detect bad software. And please keep it up to date.