Spam Protection


 What is Microsoft Forefront Online Protection for Exchange (FOPE)?

Beginning in Summer of 2012, all Valdosta State University email accounts hosted through Microsoft Windows Live were moved from our existing spam filtering system, IronPort, to Microsoft's Forefront Online Protection for Exchange (FOPE). This advanced, all-in-one suite provides protection for VSU email accounts on three different levels:

  • Antivirus Protection - FOPE has a 100% block rate against all known email viruses.
  • Antispam Protection - FOPE will protect accounts against 98% of all inbound spam messages.
  • Disaster Recovery - In the case of an email service outage, FOPE stores and continues to attempt to deliver both inbound and outbound emails for up to 5 days, to prevent any email from being lost.

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What types of malicious and/or unsolicited emails should a watch out for?

While FOPE signifies an improvement to account protection, bear in mind that with the release of new unknown malware applications and scams developing daily worldwide, there is no such thing as perfect protection. Thus, the IT Helpdesk recommends understanding the following types of threats and how to respond to them:

Type of Email

Spam: Spam is unsolicited email sent through a bulk mailing list, generally used for advertising products, services or events. More often than, spam is not harmful to your computer or accounts,

high amounts of spam can hinder productivity, as these unwanted messages must be dealt with.

Scam: Scam emails are emails that make fraudulent claims. The purpose of this email is to convince the recipient to take an action such as sending money or downloading a programs.

Malware: Malware emails contain attached files. When the attachment is opened, it causes damage to the computer in a similar manner to most viruses.

Phishing: A phishing email is a type of scam that tries to trick the recipient into providing account information such as email account or bank account information, so the sender can access the recipient's account without authorization.

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What should I do if I receive a suspicious email?

If you receive an email that looks suspicious based on the table above, we would recommend the following steps: