Taking Mail’s Junk Filter for Granted

At work, my primary workstation is an aging, but completely effective Macintosh G4. I also carry around a Blackberry handheld for remote e-mail, calendar and Web.

On weekends and in the evening, the ratio of spam messages to “known good” e-mails is tremendous. I often had wondered why spammers thought the best time to reach me was on the weekend or in the evening, as upward of 80% of my messages to the Blackberry, or accessed through the company’s Outlook Webmail seemed to be of the spam variety in these “off peak hours” times.

This week, it hit me. While at the office, logged into Mail.app on the Mac, a tremendous amount of junk mail sent to my account is correctly automatically filtered to the Junk folder. When I am not logged into Mail.app, the messages sneak through – whether to the Blackberry or to the Outlook Webmail. That I saw an abundance of spam when outside of the office was directly due to the fact I was outside of the office in the first place, and not because it was convenient for the spammers themselves.

I haven’t given much thought to Apple’s junk status filter in Mail.app for some time, but now that I finally had the light bulb go off, telling me how well it works, I am going to become merciless to spam. I am marking every spam message that sneaks through the filter as Junk, and training Mail.app to get even better at what it already does an excellent job for.

Thank goodness for Mail.app’s Junk filter. It’s so good, and yet I hadn’t even noticed.

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