Once upon a time, the word ‘spam’ referred to a food product that elicited strong reactions, both positive and negative. Now, the term is more frequently used to refer to unwanted bulk emails, and very few individuals indeed have anything positive to say about this abuse of a major means of internet communication. Fortunately for businesses and other organizations that use email as an integral part of their operations, there are a number of tools that IT support staff can put in place to combat this plague of the modern age.
A traditional way of fighting spam is with an email filter. These programs scan incoming email for specific words and phrases that are considered ‘red flags’ as they are commonly used to describe scams and other schemes designed to steal money via deception or install malware on the systems of unsuspecting users. Filters can also classify email as spam if the messages originate from certain addresses or organizations known to be spam producers.
The trouble with a filter approach, of course, is that the results will only be as good as the filter itself. Just as an anti-virus program needs regular updates to keep current with the threat environment, so too does a spam filter need to be regularly updated. Unlike the typical anti-virus program, however, spam filters can be updated through a teaching mechanism in which individual users can identify messages that are spam. The filter then adds those addresses and / or content concerns to its database of email to intercept and keep away from end users.
These intelligent forms of spam filters can be installed and maintained as part of a managed programs model for IT services. In this approach, highly qualified tech support personnel visit your business premises on a regular basis to install, update, and maintain the programs that your business depends on. These visits are usually scheduled on a recurring basis to guarantee that ongoing maintenance is not neglected. However, businesses using a managed programs model should keep in mind that urgent, unscheduled visits are also a possibility with this approach. Should a business require additional services on an immediate basis, the IT company providing the managed services staff can be contacted so that a mutually beneficial arrangement can be worked out.