services 10.6.08

Inbox Defense

You can't beat the spammers. Or can you?

No, you can't. But you can take some steps to reduce the onslaught.

One highly effective method is to run your mail through the servers of Clear My Mail. It's $29.95 for one account for a year (they'll give you a discount for multiple accounts). They call themselves "the world's only 100% guaranteed spam blocker," and came pretty darn close in our experience with them. Downside: You still have to comb through the spam folder to make sure there are no false positives, which means spam isn't out of your life completely.

Two web services, KnujOn (read it backwards) and SpamCop, take the fight to the relevant authorities. When you get a piece of spam, you forward it to KnujOn or SpamCop, a satisfying gesture that can help bring the perps down. Both companies offer free and premium options. Important note: while we recommend them, be sure to read this first, since there are potential risks. Still, KnujOn says it has shut down over 79,500 junk email sites in the past three years—a good start.

On your own computers, there's effective software to help separate email you want from email you don't. On the PC, check out Cloudmark and SPAMfighter. On the Mac, the gold standard is SpamSieve.

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