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Viagra, spam messages cluttering campus inboxes

Spam e-mail through B-mail has been a re-occurring problem for students and the administration is struggling to find its solution.

Recently, many students have been receiving Viagra offers through their e-mail.

Senior accounting major Michael Beesley has received several of these spam e-mails.

“I have had quite a few friends mention that they have received similar Viagra spam emails as I have,” he said. “I continue to get them every other day, and since they are special they are more noticeable than other spam emails.”

Beesley said he only uses his B-mail for e-mailing people on campus and for job applications, so when he began receiving the e-mails he didn’t take it seriously.

“I felt that it was a joke,” he said. “ I thought that people were just getting my e-mail address and sending it to friends.”

Senior special education major Emily Piersialla said these specific Viagra e-mails have been resisting her spam filter.

“I wish they would just go into my spam folder,” she said. “I click on them and put them into the spam folder but then when I get one the following week they once again appear in my inbox.”

Piersialla said she is frustrated with the e-mails and is unsure with how she should approach this problem.

“I’m not good with computers,” she said. “ I hope that there is some way that Bradley would be able to block these e-mails from coming to my Bmail account.”

Associate Provost for Information Resources and Technology Chuck Ruch said there isn’t much the university can do to handle spam e-mails, such as the common Viagra advertisements, except to emphasis deleting and flagging reports of spam.

“Spam is an irritant and burns your time in deleting it.  Assuming that you don’t click on the links in the email and just delete it, little or no damage will be done, “ he said. “My advice is to block what you can, delete the rest and never follow the links in these email.”

Ruch said they are available to help students with spam and filtering problems by personally addressing how the student is handling their e-mail.

“I could not pinpoint specifically when, but we’ve been actively working on this problem for well over five years,” he said. “ We work with people who bring issues to us to improve their understanding about how to manage the problem.”

Senior System Administrator Paul Carpenter said one way to avoid receiving spam mail is to read the privacy policies before they sign up for seemingly harmless services and share their e-mail. Carpenter also said social networking sites are one of the reasons why spamming has gotten out of control.

“Social networking sites are an all-too-easy way to give away the addresses of your friends,” he said. “By allowing that site to ‘see’ your address book in an attempt to see if those same folks are part of the system, like Facebook, you are allowing your whole address book to be captured-and at that point, it’s out of your control.”

Student Senate Technology Services & Affairs Chairperson, Nicholas Swiatkowski said he agrees with Carpenter and suggests students watch how they use their e-mail.

“The best thing to do is to mark e-mails in your inbox as spam and to delete e-mails once you receive them,” he said. “You should also create a separate Google or Yahoo account for your private e-mails and for the sites you have to sign up for. Therefore you can eliminate the potential of spam to your Bmail account.”

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