SPAM INFORMATION PAGE
 
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We have been asked hundreds of questions by customers about Spam and Spam filters.  This page is meant to outline what RiverNet is doing to minimize Spam email and what steps, you, the customer, can take to help. 

Spam has become so pervasive in recent months that it is has begun to take a lot of the fun and functionality out of email. We have a filtering system to remove unwanted email so that you could continue to enjoy legitimate messages from your friends, family and business associates. 

On September 29, 2005, we installed a new email server, hardware and software.  It has a very powerful anti-virus filter and also a very good anti-spam filter to prevent spam.  Legitimate emails are delivered to your INBOX.  Suspect SPAM emails are put into your SPAM folder, and definite SPAM emails are deleted.  You can check your SPAM folder by using our Web Mail interface.  If you find that some legitimate emails are going into your SPAM folder, you can setup rules so that they will be placed in your inbox.  Instructions for setting up these "white list" Server Rules can be found by clicking here.  We hope that you find our new spam filter to be a great asset in eliminating unwanted email from reaching you.  As always, we at RiverNet strive to provide you the best internet experience possible.  If you should decide that you do not want your email filtered for SPAM, just send an email to lancaster@rivnet.net with the subject "Remove me from the spam filter" and we will not filter your email for SPAM.

Each user's experience can be different depending on many factors including the number and type of solicitation messages to which you respond, and other factors detailed below. Programs which can be downloaded for free and profess to do things like speed up your internet connection are actually snooping through your folders looking for names to be sold on lists.  If you've ever received unwanted messages that include a family member's nick name or a pet's name, that is because you have a program or two on your machine which is busy collecting information about you. The spammers will pay a higher price for lists of this type because people are more likely to open a message that is personalized.  Sometimes, email addresses have been sold by spammers so many times, that no matter what filters are in place, you will still receive too much SPAM.  If that is the case, we will be happy to change your email address for you without charge.

Likewise there are plenty of “free” programs available that claim to require one of these snooping programs in order to operate.  Some people just cannot resist the lure of that magic word “FREE”.  While this is not true of all free programs (often called “shareware”), when you download "free" software from the internet, more than just the program may be loaded on your computer. Adware and spyware are programs and cookies loaded on your machine that actually send your information, both email and browsing history, to a third party.  Some software will tell you up front that without loading the adware or spyware the software will not work, so make sure you know what will be loaded onto your computer. Some programs that can be used to remove this unwanted software are Ad-aware, PestPatrol, Spybot and Spykiller.


What steps can I take to prevent Spam?

    * VISIT AND READ THE SITE ABOUT VIRGINIA'S NEW ANTI-SPAM STATUTE.

    * NEVER RESPOND TO SPAM - Even though they say will remove your address, what they want to do is confirm that they've got a live address.  They will then sell your address to more spammers.

    * DON'T POST YOUR ADDRESS - If you have a website or web page, don't post your address in the standard format username@domain.com.  Spammers use programs that "harvest" email addresses off of websites. Try posting your address like this - username @ domain.com (with spaces).

    * DO NOT USE YOUR PRIMARY ADDRESS IN NEWSGROUPS - If you use newsgroups, get a second email address, either from your ISP or free one such as Yahoo or Hotmail, and give out that address.

    * KNOW WHAT THE COMPANY NEEDS YOUR ADDRESS FOR - When you are filling out an online form, read the terms of use and privacy statements. Most legitimate companies will not sell or distribute your information, so know who you are giving it to and what they want it for.  Again, a second email address could be used here.

    * NEVER BUY ANYTHING ADVERTISED IN SPAM - People Spam because they can make money. They make money by convincing people to buy a product, so if no one buys the things advertised in Spam, companies will quit paying spammers to advertise their products. 

    * USE A SPAM FILTER - As everyone knows, there is no perfect Spam filter.  If there were, there would be no Spam problem.  However, with the combined efforts of RiverNet’s proactive effort to filter out Spam as the messages arrive at our server and Server Rules that you can set up and manage via our web interface, we can greatly reduce the number of messages that get through.

I use Netscape, how do I setup my email filter?

To setup your Netscape Message Filter, you need to know what version you are using.  If you are unsure, first you need to open the Netscape program. On the Menu Bar click onto Help, scroll down to About Communicator and click onto it. You should now see the version that you are using.  When you click here, you will then see the appropriate link for your version of Nestscape. 

I use Outlook Express, how do I setup my email filter?

If you're using Outlook Express 5 or higher, the following link will walk you through setting up your message filter.  If you are still using 4.0, please upgrade your program, Windows95 users cannot upgrade past version 5.5.  Click here to go to the filters setup page. I've got my email filter setup but still want more control...
Even when your email filters are setup some Spam is going to still get through.  A third party program can assist you controlling what comes in.  There are literally hundreds of programs that claim to help reduce the amount of Spam email that comes in. Please remember, these are third party programs. If you require help with these products contact the manufacturer or website for assistance.
 

 
REMOVE "ADWARE" AND "SPYWARE" FROM YOUR SYSTEM - When customers load purchased programs onto their systems, for the most part the software loads and runs without any problems.  When they load "free" software that has been downloaded from the internet, more than just the program can load. Adware and spyware are programs and cookies loaded onto your system that actually send your information, both email and browsing history, to a third party.  Some software will tell you upfront that without loading the adware or spyware the software will not work, so make sure you know what will be loaded onto your computer. Some programs that can be used to remove this unwanted software are Ad-aware, PestPatrol, Spybot and Spykiller.
I've got my email filter setup but still want more control...
Even when your email filters are setup some spam is going to still get through.  A third party program can assist you controlling what comes in.  There are literally hundreds of programs that claim to help reduce the amount of spam email that comes in. Please remember, these are third party programs. If you require help with these products contact the manufacturer or website for assistance.
 

 
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Last Updated October 7, 2005