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The Anti Spam Challenge – Minimizing False Positives
Email is the quintessential business communication tool, so when it doesn’t work like it’s supposed to, business suffers. Anti spam software is designed to protect your inbox from unwanted messages, but unless your system is properly trained even the best software misses the mark and flags legitimate messages as spam. These messages are referred to as “false positives.”
While consumer and ISP anti spam products focus on blocking messages and even consider some false positives acceptable, businesses require anti spam solutions that treat their messages as very valuable. Failing to receive critical messages in a timely fashion can do irreparable damage to customer and partner relationships and cause important orders to be missed, so eliminating false positives while maintaining high anti spam accuracy is paramount to any enterprise anti spam solution.
What causes false positives?
Minimizing False Positives
A comprehensive anti spam approach involves examining both message content and sender history in tandem. By using a reputation system to evaluate senders based on their past behavior, a more accurate picture of their intentions and legitimacy can be discerned, and a solution’s false positive rate can be further lowered. Has the sender engaged in spamming, virus distribution or phishing attacks in the past? If not, the likelihood of their message getting past the email gateway just went up, and the chances of a false positive declined accordingly. If they have, an effective reputation system knows and flags the message.
Each time a user makes a decision about whether a particular email is or is not spam, the system becomes more personalized and intelligent about filtering email for that individual in the future. Over time, users find that they rarely need to review their quarantines anymore because the system has learned how to identify messages that are important to that user.
Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater
CipherTrust is the leader in anti-spam and email security. Learn more by downloading our free whitepaper, “Controlling Spam: The IronMail Way” or by visiting www.ciphertrust.com.
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