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SPAM Email at Grenfell

Policies and Guidelines

Outgoing Email Flagged as SPAM

Occasionally, email sent by a Grenfell account will get blocked by a third party email provider. This can result in delayed or blocked email, and you may not receive any notification that the message was filtered at the receiving end.

Why do Grenfell's email get placed on a SPAM blacklist?

The most common reason for Grenfell emails to get blacklisted is after a successful phishing attack. When spammers forge a message pretending to be from system administrators asking users to confirm or reset their password. If a user falls for this, the spammer can then use their accounts to send large quantities of SPAM resulting in their email address getting blocked.

Another common reason is virus-infected systems can spoof the University email servers and start sending a lot of unsolicited email - resulting in user address getting blocked.

What does ITS do about the blacklisting?

We do a number of things to attempt to avoid this issue. ITS use several tools internally to detect and deal with SPAM before it leaves our network. When an account has been compromised we disable them and work with the user to set a new password. When a blacklist is detected, ITS will contact the service blocking the account to resolve the issue as soon as possible.

Things you can do:

  • If a person did not receive your email have them check their Junk Folder.
  • Notify ITS as soon as you know email was not received by the person you sent it to, so we can intervene on your behalf to resolve the issue.
  • If you are sending an important email, ask the person to notify you when they receive it.
  • If you are trying to correspond with a user when your Grenfell email is blocked by their organization, you can use an external address or you can ask the recipient for an alternate email address.

 

Incoming Email – SPAM Filtering

ITS has implemented three levels of SPAM filtering, recognizing that its effectiveness is continuously monitored and adjustments are made as spamming methods evolve.

Level one: Server level filtering

Server level filtering has been used by ITS for some time. It targets particular sites that are known to send SPAM. E-mail from these sites is rejected.

Level two: Content level filtering

ITS use a software package to evaluate incoming SPAM messages. This software scores incoming e-mails, based on a set of spam criteria, to determine how likely it is to be SPAM. Anything scoring above seven is automatically quarantined. Anything scoring below seven is delivered to the Junk Email Folder.

Level three: User Level Filtering

Users have the ability to individually block or allow spam based on individual preferences in Outlook or through webmail.  In addition, users have the ability to check quarantine messages and deliver messages flagged as SPAM to their inbox at the following site:

https://admin.protection.outlook.com/quarantine




No SPAM filtering system is 100% accurate, thus there will be false-positives (e-mail that is marked as SPAM but is not) and false-negatives (e-mail that is not marked as spam but should be).

It is the end user's responsibility to manage his/her e-mail appropriately. ITS recommends checking your INBOX Junk Mail folder, and your Quarantine (https://admin.protection.outlook.com/quarantine), and all other e-mail folders regularly. 


Manage Spam in Outlook

  1. Basic spam filtering can be enabled by email address or email domain by right clicking on a message and selecting junk as shown below. User can then mark to block, mark to never block by user or by users domain.



  2. Advanced options can be set by right clicking on a message, select junk, and selecting junk email options. If you require assistance with setting these please contact the its service desk its@grenfell.mun.ca



Level of Filtering



Safe Senders 

note: can allow contacts and anyone you send to, to be added to list.




Blocked Senders



What can I do to reduce the amount of SPAM I receive?

  1. Do not reply to SPAM.
    A lot of the SPAM that we get comes with instructions on how to "remove you from our list". Yet, more often than not, the instructions don't work. In fact, clicking on the link to unsubscribe will simply verify that your e-mail address is valid, so that the spammer can put it on the premium CD where it can be distributed to other spammers. You end up getting lots of SPAM instead of a little.

  2. Just delete it.
    Once you have received SPAM e-mail, you have already wasted system resources and your valuable time. If you suspect an e-mail to be SPAM (e.g., the sender's name is not familiar or the subject is suspicious), just delete it. Don't even bother reading the e-mail.

  3. Reduce your exposure to "harvesting".
    Don't display your e-mail address in public more than necessary. Internal web pages and mailing list archives are prime targets for spammers. If you publish web pages, don't put your address in a "click-to" e-mail. This means that people will have to cut-and-paste your address rather than e-mailing you with a single click, but it can spare you from getting a lot of SPAM. Rather than putting your e-mail address on every page of your site, it may be better to have it on only one page, with links to it.


ITS Service Desk

Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland
20 University Drive, Corner Brook, NL
A2H 5G4, Canada

Office: AS373
Phone: (709) 639-2049
Email: its@grenfell.mun.ca