The Independent Student Newspaper of Northern Kentucky University.

The Northerner

Plenty of Phish

Derek White, Staff Writer

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From time to time you may receive an email that just doesn’t seem right. These emails vary. It may be about a promotion some website is doing that just seems too good to be true, or it might be what appears to be a warning from the school that your account will be expiring in a set amount of days.

Whatever case the email is trying to make, the best thing to do is not to follow any links but to report it as spam in your Webmail account, according to Doug Wells, director of infrastructures at NKU.

For those who have received emails claiming your account will be deactivated, which has been a spam email going around the past few months, there is nothing to worry about. “Student accounts, you get email for life. I’m not going to expire your account,” Wells said.

Wells and the infrastructures team are always looking for ways to make the two existing spam filters on the NKU server better but as Wells would tell you, it’s impossible to catch all the spam. According to the NKU IT Department, they normally have around 50 emails submitted to their abuse@nku.edu account about complaints of spam and phishing each week.

Wells also explained that the IT Department catches over 80 percent of all spam sent in to the NKU Server but there’s a reason why the number isn’t higher. “It’s a fine line, if you get too restrictive you block legitimate email and if you are too open spam comes through,” said Wells.

Though it’s true not all spam emails are caught, students like junior Adam Fritz still feel comfortable using the NKU server for their main email account. “Overall they do a consistent job for meeting the students needs for the classroom,” Fritz said.

According to a list put together of total email traffic by the NKU IT department from Nov. 23 – 29, over 781,203 normal emails were delivered within the system during that time. Over 36,379 emails were caught in their policy filtering system, either rejected or quarantined; while over 647 viruses were blocked and 3.4 million spam emails were filtered out. This is just a small portion of what the IT department keeps track of each semester to protect us from spam and phishing.
For those who are looking to report cases of spam but don’t know how to do so, the NKU IT department urges anyone who is having problems with spam or phishing to notify them at abuse@nku.edu.

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The Independent Student Newspaper of Northern Kentucky University.
Plenty of Phish