How Does Spam Filtering Work?

email spam filtering

When you set up email accounts for your business, it is important to use spam filters. Spam filters are pieces of software that will detect anything from unwanted emails to emails that are filled with viruses. 

While individuals may use spam filters, businesses can use them, too. This will help you protect your company, your network and your employees. 

Spam filters can be used on both inbound and outbound emails. This is helpful, as you will be able to ensure that you are not inadvertently sending spam to clients and employees. However, typically businesses will focus on inbound filters. 

Spam filters can be hosted within a cloud solution on your server. Alternatively, they might be fully integrated into software like Outlook. A New Rochelle IT company can help you to install and set up these filters. 

How Do Spam Filters Work To Protect You?

Spam filters work by using a series of checks and algorithms to ensure that certain messages can not get through. 

Essentially, messages are checked against predefined rules. Each rule dictates the probability of a massage being spam. Once the message passes a certain score, the email will be marked as spam and blocked from appearing in your inbox. This can occur within seconds and will be removed from your inbox automatically.

There are various different types of filters, including:

  • Header filters: This checks for suspicious header source info such as the email address
  • Content filters: This checks the content, searching for words commonly used in spam
  • Rule-based filters: Rules can be customized by the business to check for key details, certain words and subject lines 
  • Blocklist filters: This ensures that emails can be stopped from blocked lists like IP addresses that are considered to be suspicious. You can even check the reputation of the IP

It’s important to note that a spam filter will not work 100% of the time. It could also pick up messages that are not spam. As such, a spam filter will need to be chosen and set up carefully, particularly if you are using rule-based filters. 

Why is Spam Filtering Necessary?

Spam filtering is necessary because approximately 70% of all emails being sent can be classed as spam. It’s a lucrative business for those sending it out, which means that it’s not going to disappear any time soon. Though not 100% effective, it can provide you with key benefits for your business. 

Filters can prevent wasted time sifting through your emails to find important messages. It can also help ensure that your employees are not at risk of phishing scams. 

Phishing scams will often begin with emails reaching out to employees, asking for key information and sensitive data. With the right filters, these can be sent directly to your junk, protecting the additional level of protection your business needs. 

Emails with dangerous web links, viruses and various other types of malicious content can also be blocked. Even just clicking an email with a bad link could lead to disastrous consequences for your business.