Services that UW provides to help manage spam

Information Technology provides several services on the central email gateway servers to help manage spam at UW:


  1. Blocking (Blacklisting) Known Spammer Email

    UW uses Message Transfer Agent (MTA) level IP blocking from Sophos to help combat spam by rejecting messages originating from known spammer IP addresses, so they never reach user inboxes. The addresses are blocked, or blacklisted, by the Sophos software and other blacklisting services.  The catalog of blacklisted IP addresses is updated frequently throughout each day.  

    Any email that is rejected by UW’s blacklist will be returned to the sender with an explanatory error message, so that senders who are inadvertently blocked can contact us for assistance. 

    As with all anti-spam systems, none are perfect.  It is possible that some email from blacklisted sites should be allowed.  Information Technology maintains a centrally managed address list of IP addresses that should not be blocked from the UW network (whitelisted sites).  If you encounter problems with improperly blocked email from IP addresses identified as spam, you may request that the address be unblocked (whitelisted).  To request that an email address be added to the central whitelist, send the address and reason to

  2. Quarantining Suspected Spam Email and Providing a Daily Spam Digest

    Exchange Online protection is enabled via our Office 365 subscription.  With EOP, email mailboxes are protected against new, sophisticated attacks in real time.  At UW, SPAM messages are filtered to a quarantine digest, where an email containing a list of quarantined messages is sent daily.  If you see a message that does not appear to be a SPAM message in your quarantine digest, simply click Release to Inbox and the message will be sent safely to your inbox.  

    UWIT has also implemented an additional level of security with PureMessage from Sophos provides UW the ability to quarantine suspected spam email, which is then sent to the user in a single daily spam email (digest) that lists each suspected message, the time it was sent, and the probability that it is spam. The user can easily release any or all of the suspected email messages to their Inbox. Additionally, through a Web interface at, the user can customize their filtering options, review messages, release messages to their Inbox, approve a sender and add them to their own personal whitelist, and delete messages from the Blocked Messages page. A UWSPAM Quarantine spam email will only be sent to a user if there has been suspect spam quarantined for that user since the last UWSPAM Quarantine email was processed.

    You may receive two digests, from two separate systems, possibly on a daily basis.  The Office 365 digest and the PureMessage from Sophos digest.

    For information on White-listing and blacklisting email accounts from OWA and Outlook, please reference these articles:
    OWA --

    Outlook -- 

  3. Tagging and Filtering Suspected Spam Email

    If a user would rather receive all suspected spam email rather than viewing it in a quarantine digest, PureMessage from Sophos also allows UW to tag suspected spam email, which then helps a user filter out the unwanted emails once they reach their Inbox.  

    Mail identified as possible spam is tagged in the Subject line with [SPAM-H], [SPAM-M], or [SPAM-L] depending on whether their probability of being spam is High, Medium, or Low. Users can then sort or filter their email by the Subject line content to more easily review and delete the unwanted emails. See Redirect your UW Email in Outlook for assistance with the creation of a spam filtering rule.  

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Article ID: 7511
Thu 7/9/15 10:27 AM
Wed 9/14/16 1:31 PM

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