Not my idea of a lunch meat anymore – Part 1
Janice D. Byer, CCVA, MVA
Docu-Type Administrative & Web Services
the first installment in our series on Spam, we took a look at some of the
ways the spammers get a hold of your email address. In this part, we will
look at some of the ways we can help reduce the instances of spam.
can WE try to curb the influx of spam:
matter how hard we try, there really isn’t a sunny prediction regarding
spam and spammers. For most, we only see it getting worse but hopefully
those brains that provide us with great programs to produce things can
also come up with miracle solutions to decrease or eliminate the spam that
is overwhelming our Inboxes, and our lives.
know… another ‘task force’ set up to ‘research the issue and the
possibilities’. But, anything is better than nothing.
the United States, most states have there own individual laws regarding
spam. They range in wording and the extent of the enforcement but most
center around trying to reduce the instances spam or at least make it
easier for anti-spam software to pick up on the fact that an email is
instance, in the state of Colorado, the Colorado Junk Email Law, which was
enacted in June 2000, states that unsolicited commercial email must
contain a ‘label’ (ie. ADV). By including this, spam programs and
email programs have something that will help make it easier to identify
the email as spam. It also states that the sender must include their email
address and that there must be an opt-out option and it must be honoured.
the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 may pre-empt each state’s laws.
more information on the laws in each state, I found a great little website
that lists the laws in full. I am assuming that this information is
correct, it sure is interesting anyway. The website is located at http://www.spamlaws.com . You can also read about the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 at http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s877.html .
recently, Industry Canada announced the development of an Anti-Spam
Initiative or Task Force, if you will, for Canada. Lucienne Robillard,
Minister of Industry, made the announcement in Ottawa, Ontario on May 11,
Spam Task Force will be involved in a 6-point action plan involving
specific initiatives by government and the private sector. It will bring
together experts and key stakeholders representing businesses and
consumers. Results from their collaboration will help in determining what
actions need to be taken in order to achieve the goal of drastically
reducing or even eliminating spam.
are current anti-fraud provisions in the Canadian Criminal Code, the
Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and the
Competition Act that can be used against spammers but the task force will
look for added solutions that will help continue the thriving path that
the Canadian Internet marketplace is following. They are committed to
addressing the spam issue in an effective and comprehensive fashion and
are not ruling out new public policies, regulations or even legislation if
it they feel it is clearly necessary.
more information on the Canadian Spam Task Force, visit the http://www.ic.gc.ca or do a search on Google and you will be given tons of links to articles
and news stories relating to the initiative.
information on spam laws in other countries, visit http://www.spamlaws.com or do a search for spam laws or anti spam (and then indicate your country)
in a search engine and you should receive numerous sites that you can
of us now have anti-virus programs on our computers. If you don’t, you
are just inviting trouble to happen. Virus’ are everywhere and you need
to have a program and keep the virus definitions up to date.
even have firewalls and security programs but that doesn’t stop spam
from making its way into out Inboxes. The newer security programs now also
include anti-spam features. You can also buy anti-spam programs that work
directly in your email program to help filter spam into folders that make
it easier to avoid and delete them.
recently upgraded to Norton Security 2004 which includes the anti-spam
feature. It adds a Spam folder in my Outlook and sends what it detects as
spam to that folder and labels the subject line with [NortonAntiSpam]. You
can then scan through the folder and unflag any that the program may have
picked up by mistake and with one click of a button, it will empty the
folder into the Deleted Items folder.
your spam definitions is easy to do by simply clicking on your Live Update
button, the same as you do to update your virus definitions. You can get a
copy of Norton Security at http://www.symantec.com.
also have an anti-spam program called Mailshell. This program is similar
to the feature in Norton Security in the fact that it establishes a folder
for the spam in my Outlook. However, it seems to take longer for emails to
be scanned when they are coming in; you have to Select All in the folder
before it can be emptied; and you have to download a new version of the
software in order to update the spam it can catch. However, it does a
great job of catching spam when it is up to date. You can find out more at http://www.mailshell.com .
can also contact your hosting company and ask them to turn on the
anti-spam filter on your account. You may even be able to turn it on
yourself or adjust the settings through your administration panel of your
account. If it is already turned on, ask your host to ‘turn it up a
notch’ but not too far otherwise it may start sending legitimate email
to the Trash.
our next installment in our series on Spam, we will look at more ways to
help reduce spam and what we need to do in the future. If you would like
to read the whole series, please visit http://www.docutype.net/press.htm.