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None of the techniques above can provide total protection in isolation; most have a way round them. The only real solution to the spam problem is to combine techniques, to create a probability score to assess whether an email is spam. Currently, detection rates of 95-98 per cent can be achieved (depending on traffic), with a very low false positive rate. But new techniques emerging, like relationship management, are likely to increase significantly the success of spam detection. Spam is a continually moving target. Spammers have a financial motivation to find new ways round detection techniques. The defence systems that will succeed are those that are able to learn and adapt; and that are continuously developing new solutions.
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