My favorite solution is Cloudmark Desktop. I will describe Cloudmark in a moment.
Cloudmark can be found here:
(referral link where I get one month free for each new user), OR
(no referral whatsoever).
Cloudmark costs $39.95 per year.
The way it works is that a user downloads Cloudmark software. Once the software is loaded, a Cloudmark toolbar is placed in your Outlook or Outlook Express. The main buttons on the Toolbar are "Block Spam", "Block Fraud" (for phishing), and "Unblock".
When I receive a spam message, I report it as spam by hitting my Spam Button. The Spam message has now been reported to Cloudmark. When the spam message as identified by its content, not sender, hits your inbox, it is automatically flagged and placed into your Spam folder. In effect, each member of the community is looking out for the greater good of the whole.
Cloudmark uses an algorithm that rates each user based upon timeliness and accuracy. If I identify spam messages promptly, and I only identify spam messages (as opposed to opt-in newsletters etc.), then I am highly rated and my "votes" are given more weight. If another user identifies lots of e-mail, both good (honest e-mail) and bad (spam), as spam, then that user is poorly rated and less weight is placed upon his vote. Regardless of the user's rating, each member receives the same protection.
So in effect, users are encouraged to correctly identify spam correctly and efficiently. If you do find a legitimate message in your Spam folder and you unblock it twice, Cloudmark asks you if you want to place the sender's e-mail address on your whitelist. You can also place addresses on a whitelist without having to "unblock" false positives (e-mail that you want that has been placed in your Spam folder).
I highly recommend this solution as I do use it and do think very highly of it. Cloudmark nails almost all of my Spam. I get virtually no false positives, and almost all of my Spam is placed in my Spam folder before I am able to take action. There are about 1.5 million "Spam Fighters" and with every additional user the more effective the solution becomes. Moreover, Cloudmark has won numerous awards:
- PC World 2005 World Class Award
- PC World 2004 World Class Award
- PC World Best Buy
- PC Magazine Editor's Choice
- PC Magazine 5 Stars for Accuracy
- PC Magazine Best of the Year Award 2004
I use this solution and think highly of it. My only interest in Cloudmark
is if you should choose to use the referral link (much like Amazon et al.,) I benefit by receiving one free month. You can choose to use the different non-referral link if you so choose.
You can also test drive Cloudmark for one month free of charge. Feel free to ask additional questions, I will try my best to follow up and provide answers.