What do you do if you can't deploy Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 but still want a client-side utility to suppress the spam that comes into your mailbox? Many independent add-ons are available for Outlook and Outlook Express. A simple Google search for "Spam" + "Outlook" generated 13 pages of results. Given so many choices, how do you decide which antispam tool is right for your organization? One way is to download trial copies of a tool from the vendor's Web site and use it in conjunction with a test account whose email address is well known to spammers. It's easy to get an email account on spammers' lists—simply using the account to post some contributions to any moderately busy list server will probably do the trick because spammers harvest addresses from these lists. Alternatively, open an account from a free email service such as MSN Hotmail or Yahoo! and use that account (this approach is probably the best option for testing Outlook Express add-ons because Outlook Express is easier to connect to these free services than Outlook is).

An alternative approach is to go to Slipstick.com, a good source of information about Outlook add-ons, and consult the list at http://www.slipstick.com/rules/junkmail.htm#tools. This list covers much more than spam and is a great introduction to the subject.