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By Claudia Lynch, Benchmarks Online Editor
The idea of "managing" spam may seem ridiculous at first, but due to the tireless efforts of a number of people in the CITC over a number of years, it really has come to the point that we all need to take an active role in managing what is defined and, perhaps more important now, not defined as "spam" by various systems in place here at UNT.
Spam, an overview
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of managing spam, lets talk about what, exactly, spam is. Spam, for the purposes of this article, is defined as "unsolicited or undesired electronic messages." The wikipedia entry where that definition came from states that there are many types of electronic spam, including:
We're only concerned with E-mail spam in this article*.
How can I manage my spam?
First of all make it a habit to check your spam, or junk mail folders every few days. You might be surprised what gets put in there. You also need to check messages quarantined by the UNT anti-spam/anti-virus system, IronPort.
The campus is progressing in our move from GroupWise to Microsoft Outlook. If you click on Help at the top of the Outlook screen and then search on Junk the following items (as of 2/14/08) will come up:
Last July we published an article called GroupWise Spam Control Features. Working from that article, if you are having things automatically sent to your trash, you need to make sure and look through your trash before you empty it, just to be sure nothing is being sent there that you really want.
UNT Spam Quarantine
No matter what e-mail system you are using, you will need to check for messages that have been quarantined by the UNT mail host system at least once every two weeks. This is because of the anti-spam/anti-virus software system that was installed last November. To view your quarantined messages, go to http://spam.unt.edu and log in with your EUID and password. If a legitimate e-mail message was quarantined, check the box next to the message and then indicate that the message should be released for delivery by choosing an action - options include Release, Release and add to Safe List, or Delete - from the "Select Action" area and then clicking the Submit button. For example:
If you receive a spam message in your regular inbox, forward it, as an attachment, to email@example.com and IronPort will tweak their spam detecting rules to block that kind of message in the future.
More information about using UNT Spam Quarantine can be found by clicking on the word Help in the top left-hand corner of the spam.unt.edu screen and then choosing Online Help after you log-in to spam.unt.edu.
If you want to read up on UNT Spam Quarantine without logging-in, you can visit: https://spam.unt.edu/help/enduser_help .
If you need further information with regard to the UNT E-mail gateway, please contact Bahram Paiani at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*By the way, did you know that spam is not new? In fact, spam delivered via the Internet or other electronic means will celebrate its 30th birthday this May. Really. Oh, and the term spam comes from the Monty Python Spam sketch which was first televised in 1970. See Brad Templeton's article Origin of the term "spam" to mean net abuse for further details.