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     Outlook upgrades: call contacts. Microsoft Outlook has of late been getting "add ons". There are several add-ons that integrate with your contact list to allow you to call phone numbers from Outlook. For example, assuming you have Skype software (free) running on your computer, the SkypeContact Dialer for Microsoft Outlook will initiate a VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) call on Skype. Skype, if you don't already know, is just one of many free software programs that let you actually make voice calls from your computer to either another computer or even to landline phones. (You can read more about VoIP at VoIPLowdown.com.) 76. Outlook upgrades: RSS reader. The newest version of email sender ID lets you subscribe to RSS (Really Simple Syndication) "news feeds/ headlines". These are the same type of "headlines" you see in Gmail or at a site like myYahoo. 77. Yahoo mail beta: AJAXified. Yahoo! Mail has a new version that's just released that uses AJAX and all kinds of web2.0-ish features that are supposed to enhance it. If you do not like the workflow of Yahoo, try out their new "beta mail". It has multi-tabs, to allow viewing of multiple emails simultaneously, and drag-and-drop of highlighted emails into folders, fast deletion of blocks of consecutive email items, RSS feed viewing, a calendar to manage tasks, and other features. If you don't like it, you can switch back. At least for now. Encrypt, part 2: Use freenigma. Freenigma is a free Firefox web browser plugin that performs email encryption for webmail-based email systems, including Gmail, Yahoo, and Hotmail/ MSN. There will also soon be a corporate professional version and a Microsoft Outlook plugin. But the basic version is free. However, to use it, the person you are sending to must also have the plugin. Since the application is currently in public beta and first- come- first- served, your intended email recipients should sign up at the same time as you. There is also an open API (Application Programmer Interface) so that you can incorporate freenigma into your own applications. Read/Write Web has more details. 90. Try steganography. Steganography is the act of hiding a message in some other media, usually a digital photograph. If someone doesn't know the message is there, they probably cannot find it, right? The only drawback is that if someone tests for standard "data hiding" methods, they may discover your hidden message. Try combining encryption and steganography. That is, encrypt a message, then bury it in a digital image or another message. 91. Escape from Nigeria. Nigerian fraud - wherein a Nigerian government employee with access to untold riches just needs a chunk of cash from you so he can escape the country - was known in the 16th century as the Spanish Prisoner Letter. In 500 years, no-one fool enough to send money ever received a cent or centavo back from the criminals behind these scams. * A beginner's guide to effective email: bibliography. This one is packed full of not tips but links, some of which may appear below as well. Here is the link to the main page: A beginner's guide to effective email. * Wayne State University email tips. Short, clear and to the point. * About.com's 6 simple savvy small business email tips. Tips 2 and 4 are arguable. A contact form is better for first contact from someone else to your company, especially if you don't know email sender ID. And checking email only once a day is just not effective. Three times a day is probably much better. Once a day means that you may find critical email-triggered tasks take much longer to complete. * Introduction to email. This is the intro page to chapter 4 of the online edition of the book Netiquette by Virginia Shea. Chapter 10 has tips for using email at work, and Chapter 15, email privacy - a grand illusion. * Email: Ten tips for writing it effectively has some good tips for effective communication. * Avoiding the dark side of email. * Electronic mail etiquette. * Email etiquette. On December 7th at 4PM EST, IT Security and IronPort presented a webinar titled "Beyond the Perimeter - Securing Email". This webinar featured Stig Ravdal, CSO of Quiznos Sub, and David Mayer, Product Manager of IronPort. If you would like to view the Webinar, click here. Like me, you may be in a state of either denial or ignorance (or both) when it comes to such wonders as email authentication, certification, accreditation and reputation. Most of us are aware that these things somehow impact on our ability to get emails delivered to the intended destinations. But that's pretty much where our understanding ends. Determined to lift my veil of ignorance, this is my interpretation of what authentication is, why it's important for email marketing, how it works, and what you need to do about authentication in your business. The basic idea You can "get away" with not authenticating your emails for the moment. But you do need to address this issue very soon. As the number of email senders and recipients using authentication grows, so does the downside of non-authenticated email: negative labels attached to your email or outright blocking of your email sender ID. Authentication is a good thing, but not a panacea Clearly, authenticating email (assuming you've implemented authentication) is a good thing for email marketers. Legitimate email can only gain. Not just in terms of a positive tag or avoiding a filter. Just as important is the fact that authentication ought to clear inboxes of some unwanted emails, like those from phishers. This helps restore trust in email as a communication medium. One of the big problems for email is the question of origin and accountability. In other words, if an email claims to be sent from bigbrand.com, does it really come from bigbrand.com? Many spammers and all phishers fake the true origins of their email. Spammers do it to avoid accountability for their actions. Phishers do it because that's the whole point of the email: to convince you it comes from your bank or a large retail chain, rather than a fraudster and con artist.