Filtering Spam in Netscape Mail

Spam emails are a growing problem on the internet. No one has enough time to read all of the spam emails that they receive even if they wanted to - which they probably don't. For this reason it is useful to filter the emails that we receive so that we separate the emails that we want to read from those that we don't. Here's some information to get you started on doing this if you are using Netscape Mail 6.

The first thing that is useful to do is to split the emails that you receive between those that are personally addressed (or copied) to you and those which are not. Most spam is sent to vast lists of email addresses which are concealed from the recipients by specifying the email addresses in the BCC (blind carbon copy) field rather than in the TO or CC fields.

To create a filter in Netscape Mail, select Message Filters from the Edit menu. To create this first filter click the New button and then change the Subject drop down selection to read To or CC and the Contains drop down selection to read Doesn't Contain then type your email address in the adjacent input field. If you have email redirection in use then click the All the following radio button at the top of the window then click the More button and repeat the process specifying your redirected email address.

Next we need to click the New Folder button at the bottom of the window and create a new folder called Junk Mail to put the emails in that don't satisfy the filter. Finally click on the OK button to apply the filter. Any future emails that you receive that do not have your email address in the TO or CC field will now be placed in the Junk Mail folder instead of the In Box. You will need to check the Junk Mail folder occasionally to see if there are any emails appearing there that you really want, most will be able to be deleted without your having to waste any time on them.

So what do you do if emails that you want continually go to your junk mail folder or spam emails continue to appear in your in box? Well you examine the emails to determine criteria that you can use to identify them and you build another filter entry to sort them into the folder where you want them to go. Filters will be applied in the order specified in the filter list with only those emails not meeting the criteria for one filter being passed to the next and emails not meeting any criteria ending up in the In Box. You can change the order of the filters that you have built by selecting the filter to be moved and then using the Move Up and Move Down buttons to move it to the correct place in the sequence.

You can also change existing filters by selecting them from the list and clicking the Edit button or remove existing filters by selecting them from the list and clicking the Delete button.

As well as filtering on To or CC you can also filter on subject, sender, body, date, priority, status, to, cc, and age in days. You can select based on what the specified field contains, doesn't contain, begins with, or ends with. Finally, you don't necessarily have to redirect the filtered mail to another folder, you can instead change its priority, delete it, mark it as read, or flag it.


This article written by Stephen Chapman, Felgall Pty Ltd.

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