Why do some of my students avoid their NUS inbox? They are being spammed by NUS groups and NUS’ anti-spam software!

Students are told they need to check their NUS emails for critical messages from modules. Yesterday, my honours student was unaware of a briefing email to TAs sent a day before. I was surprised as she is very efficient on Gmail and LINE with me.

So she looked sheepish when we found it in her NUS student exchange inbox from the afternoon before. However, as I examined her inbox, I marvelled at the clutter present in there. No wonder she is hesitant about venturing into her student account.

So I showed her two things:

1) Unsubscribe from irrelevant NUS groups.
She was on 30+ lists (we had removed a few before I grabbed this screen shot). She purged herself of all but two. Not all were active, but a few certainly were, and enough to suffocate her inhibit efficient use.

All she had to do was to go to https://groups.nus.edu.sg/NUSgroups/, login (nusstu\userid or if staff, nusstf\userid) and enter her password.

Mailing list groups rtf

2) Delete twice-daily spam digests from NoSpamMail@nus.edu.sg
All of us in NUS are subscribed to Proofpoint Protection Server, an anti-spam service. It delivers a spam-digest email into our inbox twice a day. This so you can check for false positives but these are rare, so I was essentially being exposed to junk mail subject lines twice a day. This delivery cannot be customised so I am ironically getting spammed by my own anti-spam protection!

An example of the spam-digest email. No, I don’t want to see this twice a day.Gmail NUS Staff

NUS IT Care will talk to the vendor. In the meantime, I told my students they could archive the emails from NoSpamMail@nus.edu.sg to a separate folder, and keep their inboxes clutter free – and now read the emails from their professors instead.

In my account, I set a rule which deletes the spam digests so I never ever have to see them. I can check for false positives at the server directly perhaps once a month. Or perhaps not at all – I can barely keep up with regular emails.

We barely have time to think. And inboxes are a stressful necessity in our fast-paced lives. So any method to relieve us of unwanted messages is a boon. Or maybe like my student, stop reading inboxes altogether.

Spam is quarantined efficiently in my account,
with no genuine emails labelled as spam and none getting through even without SpamSieve

Proofpoint sivasothi nus edu sg 1

2 thoughts on “Why do some of my students avoid their NUS inbox? They are being spammed by NUS groups and NUS’ anti-spam software!

  1. An organization with over thirty mailing lists? Unsubscribe to all of them. That’s an incredible amount of email generated everyday! And that spam management regime is another task towards managing an already bulging inbox! Ridiculous!

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