Office of Information Technology

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Fighting Campus SPAM

According to MIT’s Technology Review, “Junk e-mail now accounts for more than half of all messages sent… New weapons are helping stem the tide, but the spammers are a wily and willful bunch, and an online arms race is spiraling out of control.” Sometimes referred to as SPAM or UCE (Unsolicited Commercial Email)*, these messages are clogging email inboxes campus-wide. Muhlenberg will join this war against spam. Our intent is to provide users with tools and processes to lessen the burden of spam, not to read or censor their email.

Our intent is to ‘tag’ the subject line of suspected messages in such a way as to allow users to configure their email reader programs (such as Netscape Communicator) to identify and handle such messages differently than non-tagged mail. Suspect messages will have the tag [JSpamFilter] inserted at
the beginning of the subject line, such as:

[JSpamFilter] Hurry for Low Mortgage Rates!

You may choose initially to configure your email reader software to automatically move all such tagged messages to a folder other than your inbox. Netscape Messenger allows you to create Message Filters. Then when time permits, you can review these quarantined messages to insure that no legitimate messages were inadvertently tagged.

If and when you determine that the tagging process is wholly accurate, you could choose to configure your email reader software to automatically delete such tagged messages immediately upon receipt.

*For more information on SPAM or UCE (Unsolicited Commercial Email)*, visit CAUCE, The Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial Email.