Yesterday I switched to a new spam filtering system (one we'll be offering to customers at Atl-Connect shortly), and today I'm beginning to feel a bit lonely. Email comes in so infrequently now, it's like I'm not loved anymore.
In the past, I was filtering spam three different ways. First, my mail server rejected mail from senders on SpamCop's blacklist, along with a handful of other decent spam blacklists. Second, my own email was forwarded through a full-blown SpamCop account, which applied several more blacklists along with its own filtering logic. SpamCop nailed a lot of spam for me. Finally, I use Thunderbird for my email client, which has a very good Bayesian filter on it, and it was able to detect and quarantine most of the spam that made it past SpamCop. All told, I figure I get something like 250 spam emails a day, to about 50 “real” emails. The signal-to-noise ratio has been getting worse and worse over the past six months to one year, but I felt like I was doing a pretty good job of managing it.
Until today, I didn't quite comprehend just how much was getting through. I guess in my fog of “this is how I handle it,” I was simply marking as spam and moving on with my life. This new system is so good, that so far not one piece of spam that was examined by the system has made it through to me, and of several hundred blocked messages, only two were “legitimate” that I've found.
So, the question of the day is this: How much would you be willing to pay for really exceptional spam filtering and virus filtering? What's this worth to my customers? I won't taint the pool by telling you what I think I'm going to charge for this service (it'll b e available on a per-mailbox basis, at an additional fee). So tell me (anonymously, or by private email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you prefer) – what would be “reasonable and customary” in your view for this kind of service?