Best Anti-spam Software [Updated for 2021]


If you or your users heavily rely on email, you need to keep it clean. 

You don’t want annoying spam cluttering up your inbox, and you don’t want to be lured into clicking on a phishing link. 

Your email provider or internet service provider (ISP) likely has some level of protection to filter emails out of your inbox. However, with the prevalence of email-based threats, those are no longer sufficient. 

You need a quality anti-spam solution to reduce the chances of someone in your organization unknowingly clicking on a malicious link or download.

Aside from the dangerous types of unwanted emails, you also want to get rid of general spam.

To accomplish these goals, any IT consulting company — not just The KR Group — will tell you anti-spam software is crucial to protect your users and declutter your inbox. 

There are several options for anti-spam, so to help you narrow down your choices, we’ve picked three of the solutions we most often recommend. In no particular order, here are what The KR Group considers the best anti-spam:

  1. Mimecast Anti-spam 
  2. Proofpoint Email Protection
  3. AppRiver Email Security

All of these options are cloud-based, giving them advantages (such as automatic updates, reduced bandwidth, and fast response) over traditional anti-spam on your hardware. 

Mimecast Anti-spam

Mimecast’s anti-spam software is part of their email security solution, including targeted threat protection to prevent users from clicking on malicious URLs and tools for content control, DLP tools, secure messaging, and sending large files. 

When it comes to spam, Mimecast promises to: 

  • Stop 99% of it from entering inboxes
  • Have a 0.0001% false-positive rate
  • Block 100% of malware attacks

Mimecast also helps users declutter their inboxes with filing tools for graymail like newsletters and mailing lists. It also gives administrators central and granular control over anti-spam policies.

Mimecast Ratings

On Gartner Peer Insights, Mimecast earned 4.5 out of 5 stars. Reviewers gave it high praise for product capabilities, and product functionality, and performance.

Check out this 5-star review from an IT infrastructure senior manager:

We have no complaints about the Mimecast Email Gateway. It is a solid performer and it is easy to maintain and work within. It provides us with impersonation protection and URL rewrite capabilities along with attachment protection on top of the normal email security settings. These capabilities are extremely valuable in the current threat landscape.”

Mimecast Cost

Mimecast breaks its anti-spam offerings into two categories. 

One category is for small businesses and includes these three tiers: 

  • Mimecast Core offers a secure email gateway, targeted threat protections, internal email protection, and awareness training. This tier costs less than $340 per month for up to 49 users.
  • Mimecast Hero is the next tier and provides all of Core’s capabilities plus continuity, sync & recovery, web security, large file sending, and secure messaging. Pricing for this option is less than $420 per month for up to 49 users.
  • Mimecast Mega, the highest tier for small businesses, includes all the features of Hero and adds others, such as 99-year archive, e-discovery, early case assessment, extended retention, and integrated security and archive. You can expect to pay less than $630 per month for 48 or fewer users. 

You can work with Mimecast for pricing details if you’re organization has between 50 and 99 users. However, they offer a commercial and enterprise category for businesses with 100 or more users. 

If you’d fall into this category, your best option is to contact Mimecast to find out which of their six options (plus optional add-ons) is the right fit for your organization and how much it costs.

Proofpoint Email Protection

Proofpoint identifies threats by using multi-layered content analysis. Its signature-based detection prevents known threats while its dynamic reputation analysis (machine learning) analyzes IP addresses to determine if emails are safe or unsafe. 

When deployed in the cloud, Proofpoint Email Protection:

  • Provides 99.999% service availability
  • Blocks or redirects 99% of spam
  • Ensures 100% virus protection

Proofpoint also works by securing your mail and protecting users and data from imposter emails, phishing scams, malware, bulk mail, and other types of spam.

Proofpoint’s AI integration is what makes it stand out as a solid option for anti-spam protection. 

Proofpoint Ratings

Gartner Peer Insights reviews rank Proofpoint slightly higher than Mimecast with 4.6 out of 5 stars. Like Mimecast, product functionality and performance was the top deciding factor for users, and those users rated product capabilities and integration and deployment as the best components of Proofpoint.

This IT director gave Proofpoint’s anti-spam solution 5 stars and said: 

“Because of the tools that are provided from Proofpoint, our IT department has been able to focus on essential projects and not being inundated by viruses, malware, encryption, or other forms of attack. We have reduced our spam by 85% with the spam module alone. We use TAP in order to filter the attachments and links that are sent to us from unscrupulous accounts.”

Proofpoint Pricing

Proofpoint’s business plan starts at $3.75 per user per month. Next, the advanced plan costs around $4.65 per user per month, and the top tier, the professional plan, costs about $5.35 per user per month. 

All of these options include the following features:

  • Spam filtering
  • Reporting
  • Content filtering
  • Outbound filtering
  • Emergency inbox
  • Email spooling
  • Email logs
  • Active Directory sync
  • Attachment protection
  • URL filtering defense
  • Instant replay

The advanced plan also incorporates email encryption, and the professional plan features email archiving. 

If you’re a larger organization, Proofpoint offers enterprise agreements that you can work with them to match your needs. 

AppRiver Email Security 

AppRiver has earned our recognition as an anti-spam provider with quality protection, especially for managed IT services clients. 

Generally, Mimecast and Proofpoint provide better protection, but AppRiver stands out with its accessibility when it comes to managed IT services. 

With AppRiver, you’ll receive a daily report of spam, which is categorized as general spam, malware, released mail, and trash. 

When analyzing your emails, AppRiver uses more than 60 filtering tests, including:

  • Graymail
  • Spear-phishing
  • SPF verification
  • Domain key identified mail (DKIM) protocol verification
  • Domain-based authentication reporting and conformance (DMARC) verification
  • Additional sender verification checks

Overall, AppRiver increases its effectiveness with more than 8 million rules written by its technicians, who monitor and proactively adjust email security defenses 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

AppRiver Ratings

There aren’t any reviews for AppRiver on Gartner Peer Insights. However, it has 4 out of 5 stars on G2 Business Software Reviews, so it ranks slightly below the other anti-spam software you’ve read about in this article.

Here’s an excerpt from on 5-star review for AppRiver

“The customer service is the best; there is no automated attendant on the calls. The products are also excellent, and the associates know its business backwards and forwards. The associates always seem to be pleased you are calling – they are ready and willing to help.”

AppRiver Cost

Regardless of how many users you have, AppRiver starts its pricing at $50. 

From there, you’re charged per user, beginning at $2.95 for the lowest tier. 

This price is lower than many of AppRiver’s competitors. However, the options available at $2.95 are limited, such as only 2 GB of mailbox storage.

Which should you choose? 

Whether you choose Mimecast, Proofpoint, or AppRiver, you’ll have better protection for your email security than sticking to the basic filters included with your email platform. 

But how do you choose which one you should choose? 

If quality is your top concern, Proofpoint has the best ratings. On the other hand, if you’re looking for the most competitive pricing, AppRiver might be the right choice. And if you’re looking for something in the middle, you might opt for Mimecast. 

The good news is you can try out Proofpoint before committing to purchase and implement it for your organization. 

The KR Group offers a 30-day free trial of Proofpoint. So follow this link, fill out the short form, and we’ll direct you to your free trial. 

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