University adopts anti-spam service for Kent State e-mail

Abbey Stirgwolt

Kent State is in the process of canning spam.

Starting June 1, the university will implement a new anti-spam service that will block most junk mail sent to kent.edu e-mail accounts.

“We get about 800,000 e-mails a day. Seventy-five to 80 percent of that is spam,” e-mail system administrator Jared Boehm said.

The new anti-spam service will automatically separate spam e-mails, classifying them as “spam” or “likely spam” and dropping them in a “junk box.”

“You’ll get an e-mail in the morning summarizing the spam you received. It’s then set aside for you to review,” Boehm said.

Users can peruse their junk boxes to check for e-mails they may want to keep. The remaining e-mails, if left in the junk box, will be deleted after a certain number of days.

The service also scans for viruses, and can be especially helpful in detecting new and unknown viruses, said Greg Dykes, manager of systems administration.

“It’s just another level of protection,” he said.

Boehm said that, though the system isn’t perfect, it is “about 98 percent accurate.”

“You should always still be skeptical,” he said, adding that some spam may still get through to users’ inboxes.

Boehm said the contents of the junk box don’t count as part of the user’s quota, so that regardless of how many e-mails are contained in the junk box, the account retains its normal capacity for receiving messages.

The anti-spam program is currently in the test phase, being reviewed by a pilot group of about 400 people, Boehm said.

So far all the feedback has been positive.

“For the people in the pilot, we’ve generated maybe one call to the help desk,” Boehm said.

When the program launches in June, students who wish to opt out may do so by visiting http://dept.kent.edu/canthespam0.

Most, however, welcome the new service in favor of clutter-free inboxes.

Joshua Bragg, freshman aeronautical systems major, said he thinks the service is a good idea.

“As long as it doesn’t filter out anything you want to keep,” he said.

Boehm thinks the service will be well received by campus e-mail users, both for its practical purposes and for its facility.

“It’s so simple to use — just unbelievable,” Boehm said.

Contact technology reporter Abbey Stirgwolt at [email protected]