IT experts such as Kloss say employees generally do not know what to do with spam and that education must be used in conjunction with technology to combat spam.
"For instance, the very worst thing you can do when you get a piece of spam is to respond to it," says Kloss, whose clients include all of the major auto companies.
When you open a piece of junk
e-mail, Kloss says, you are telling the spammers that they have found a valid e-mail address. Chances are that the spammer will sell your
e-mail address to another spammer.
Perot Systems Corp., of Plano, Texas, (perotsystems.com) uses spam-blocking software from Tumbleweed Communications Corp. (tumbleweed.com) and others to stop spam at the server level for its e-mail systems.
In a company with 9,500 e-mail users, Perot Systems is blocking more than 400,000 spam e-mail messages a week, says Bob Mattana, a group vice president at its Southfield, Mich., office. Perot Systems automotive customers include Volkswagen of America Inc. (vw.com) and ArvinMeritor Inc. (arvinmeritor.com).
About 5 percent of the spam e-mail still gets through, Mattana says.
Just like the war against hackers and computer viruses, the fight against spam will continue to require better software, he says: "Spammers continually come up with ways to get through the system."
Ralph Kisiel can be contacted at [email protected] Detroit-area freelance writer Tim Moran and National Editor Chaz Osburn contributed to this report.