Properly Identifying and Reporting Email Spam

“Spam” is unsolicited email. Sending spam is illegal in the United States, but the open nature of the Internet makes it very difficult to eliminate its occurrence.  Most spam is sent by botnets, networks of hacked machines that are controlled by criminal organizations in countries with looser regulations. It’s important to note that you should never click on links in spam emails that advertise services such as illegal pharmacies.

Rackspace Email employs several different spam detection and prevention systems to ensure that our customers aren’t bothered by unwanted email. Most attempted spam is blocked before it enters our email system, however, some unwanted email might still reach your mailbox.

If you receive spam with Rackspace Webmail, you can report it by right-clicking on the email within the webmail interface. By reporting the email, information is sent to our affiliate spam blockers, allowing us to better prevent spam in the future.

Not all unwanted emails are spam, though. You may have inadvertently signed up for or agreed to receive emails from a particular business. The following are three common questions associated with identifying incoming mail.

Is This Marketing Email a Piece of Spam?
Not necessarily!  You may have signed up for the email list in the past; for example, when you used your email address to order a product or sign-up for a webinar.  Rather than reporting these emails as spam, it is better to remove your email addresses from these lists.

All business email is required by the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 to contain a method for opting out of future mailings.  If you no longer wish to receive offers from a legitimate business, you should follow instructions in the email to remove yourself from the list. Typically, this is a quick and painless process.

I Have a Message Tagged [Spam] in My Inbox. Should I Report It?
If you receive a message with a subject line starting with “[Spam]”, that means Rackspace Email servers believe the message to be spam, but are not completely sure.  If this message is actually spam, you can simply delete it.  If it is not, then reporting it as ‘not spam’ (by right-clicking on the message in Rackspace Webmail) will help us to more accurately classify future incoming emails.

Important Email is Being Marked as Spam. What Can I Do?
If email from a particular contact is being blocked, you can add the sender to your safelist using the Rackspace Email Control Panel or Rackspace Webmail. Safelists should be as specific as possible because they allow incoming email to bypass Rackspace Email’s spam checks.  Rather than safelisting an entire domain, it is best to safelist an individual user or IP address.

Current email server not accurately handling spam? Sign up for Rackspace Email to get premium spam protection. If you’re a current Rackspace Email customer, learn more about how to mange your spam settings in the Spam Filtering section of our Support Site now. 

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