Written by Richard Lowe

There have been a number of stories inrepparttar press lately about a system called Carnivore (what a great name). This is a hardware/software system designed byrepparttar 109647 FBI to intercept emails at an ISP so they can be used in a criminal investigation.

Before going any further, it may be useful to explain how email works. By it's very nature, email is completely insecure. Any number of people can read that personal note you have written, and it's very possible that your private messages to that other woman could wind up inrepparttar 109648 newspaper.

Perhapsrepparttar 109649 best analogy is to compare email to postcards. When you send a postcard, you write your message on one side and put repparttar 109650 address onrepparttar 109651 other. The message can be read by anyone who cares to pick uprepparttar 109652 postcard.

The path an email takes to get to it's destination is very interesting. First, of course, you compose a message in your email program. Regardless of whether it is Eudora, Outlook, Outlook Express or any number of other packages,repparttar 109653 email will almost certainly be saved in a temporary folder. Some mail programs deleterepparttar 109654 temporary copy ofrepparttar 109655 message after it is sent and some do not. In any event, it is entirely possible that a copy ofrepparttar 109656 email is sitting on your hard drive for anyone to look at.

Of course a copy is kept in your sent items folder, unless you've deleted it. And even then, a copy might be kept in your deleted items folder. If you are using Microsoft Exchange as your email engine, then it might even save a copy even if you delete repparttar 109657 message permanently, just in case.

Okay, once you sendrepparttar 109658 email it goes out torepparttar 109659 internet. It's possible for a very good hacker to grab it directly offrepparttar 109660 wire (although highly unlikely as this is not easy). The message will get routed to your ISP's email server, which means it will reside on one or more computer systems for a brief time. Of course it could be intercepted at any of these.

Oncerepparttar 109661 message reaches your ISP's SMTP (email) server, it will get stored there for a time, untilrepparttar 109662 SMTP server can figure out how to send it onward to it's destination. The message will get sent here and there, as indicated by various systems, until it reachesrepparttar 109663 destination POP (post office) server, where it will wait to be read. Of course, once it is read by someone onrepparttar 109664 other end, they could store it, delete it, forward it and reply to it, further increasingrepparttar 109665 chances that someone else will see what you've written.

Spam: Bozo Filters

Written by Richard Lowe

A bozo filter is a feature of email and newsgroups clients to allow you to automatically delete messages which you do not want to receive. This is typically used to eliminate flame spam messages so you don't have to see them.

For example, I am subscribed to a number of topics on Yahoo Egroups. In general these groups have pleasant conversations among people who stay on topic and don't flame. There are two individuals, however, who are abusive and make no substantial contributions and seerepparttar need to post flames and sarcastic remarks regularly. I could just ignore (and delete) these messages myself, or I could (and have) set up a bozo filter in Outlook which automatically deletes all messages from their email address. This ensures that I don't need to readrepparttar 109646 messages from these people except as part of a reply to another message (rare).

Usingrepparttar 109647 filters supplied with virtually all modern email and newsgroup clients, you can seriously cut down on spam and other unwanted messages. However, to be effective, you have to maintain your filters on a regular basis. Here's what I do: whenever I receive an email which is undesirable, I scan it quickly to identify something which would identify it. This might berepparttar 109648 FROM address,repparttar 109649 SUBJECT (some or all of it) or various phrases withinrepparttar 109650 message body. Ifrepparttar 109651 FROM address is strange (which it often is in spam messages), then it's better to key offrepparttar 109652 subject or text body. These identifiers are then added to my filters. In other words, I tellrepparttar 109653 email client "if you see this phrase inrepparttar 109654 message body, then please automatically deleterepparttar 109655 message.

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