MxScan Message Scoring Overview

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MxScan Message Scoring Overview


Over the years experimenting and using various anti-spam solutions, we have come to the conclusion that the best method of spam classification is to use a weighted scoring system. Relying solely on just one test would eventually lead to false positives (no matter how good the filter is). With this in mind, MxScan is designed to use the cumulative scores of all the combined test and filters and to then perform specific defineable "Filter Actions" according to the score total received.


One question that we often get is how to best configure the scores. There are no hard rules when it comes to scoring given the diversity and volume of spam received. The Application comes with default scores that will fit most installations, however you can further fine tune it over time so it better fits your environment by reviewing the transaction log.


For instance if you find that a certain filter/test/rule is causing false positives you can lower the score for that particular test. Vice versa, if there are false negatives you can increase or enable more tests. The general idea here to use cumumlative scores to determine an action to be taken. It is safe to say that if a message fails multiple test the likely hood that the particular message is spam is high.


To begin with you should stick with the default spam filter scores but instead fine tune the scores under "filter actions". For ex. If you are getting a lot of hits for the "Low" filter action then increase the scores a bit. Start out with conservative scores and increase over time if necessary in order to avoid False Postives. Dealing with False Negatives is much easier because the Professional Version comes with additional tests which should catch most of the remainding spam. There is also an option for Message Sniffer (see below for details) integration which boasts of more than 98% catch rates as a single test alone.