How do you read email when there's so much spam?

Mark Bernstein has an observation and a question:

I no longer trust my email. If you send me mail, I will probably receive it, but I’m far from certain that it won’t be lost in the vast deluge of spam.

Meanwhile, Eudora is obviously past its sell-by date; my spam bucket overflows every month, and apparently Eudora crashes when it has more than 32,768 messages in a mailbox. With a mere thousand spam messages a day, that’s suddenly a very real possibility.

Do grownups rely on Is there another option?

I definitely rely on, and mail almost never gets “lost in the vast deluge of spam.” Here’s my setup:

  • Most spam gets caught by spamassassin on the server, which sends it on to me appropriately marked.
  • I then have a Rule that puts such messages into my SPAM mailbox without ever appearing in my Inbox.
  • Spam that gets through the spamassassin filter unscathed might then be caught by’s Junk Mail filter. In that case it gets automagically routed to my Junk mailbox by another Rule.
  • A tiny amount of spam manages to evade both filters. I manually mark it as Junk.
  • I have separate Rules that delete all mail over a week old from both the SPAM and Junk mailboxes, so that I have a chance to look them over if I wish. I have almost never had any false positives, but they do occur every once in a while.

Data from a single day (yesterday):

Spam messages caught by spamassassin on server 212
Spam messages caught by’s Junk Mail filter 14
Spam messages that avoided both filters 2
False positives 0
Legitimate messages 52

Categories: Technology