The context is long, so I'll ask my question first.
If an encrypted message is received from an unfamiliar sender and it's spam, how can I avoid receiving further messages of the same sort?
If it's a wrong address and not spam, I can simply respond to clarify the situation. But how can I tell whether it's spam or a wrong address?
I have a hunch that there's simply nothing to be done. Although, at the very least, guidance on whether to delete or mark as spam would be appreciated.
- I'm using Gmail.
- The services used to deliver these messages (Cisco Registered Envelope Service and Proofpoint Encryption) seem to be on the up-and-up.
- Each message comes from a different name that I'm not familiar with. The user parts of the email addresses happen to be formatted similarly to mine, with a dot between first and last name.
- The email messages state that I should disregard them if they're not for me. No recipient information is provided beyond the To: address, so I don't really know whether they are.
- I have no reason to expect that someone in the healthcare industry is desperately trying to contact me confidentially.
- If these messages are not for me, I want them to stop. They get past the spam filters and are irritating. (Mostly they are irritating because they are actually addressed to my mother's inbox, so they get priority treatment.)
- Would I even be able to read the messages if they are not for me? I.e., would these services require additional information, or would receiving the message be sufficient to read it?
I recently received the following message, apparently from someone at US Anesthesia Partners via Cisco Registered Envelope Service. I marked it as spam and forgot about it.
[From/To and boring info about time received] Message-Id: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Content-Type: multipart/mixed; boundary="===============4057323444299023882==" MIME-Version: 1.0 Date: 02 Dec 2015 11:54:46 -0600 Subject: SECURED --===============4057323444299023882== Content-Type: multipart/alternative; boundary="===============7485819488709674644==" MIME-Version: 1.0 --===============7485819488709674644== Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit You have received a secure message. Read your secure message by opening the attachment, securedoc.html. You will be prompted to open (view) the file or save (download) it to your computer. For best results, save the file first, then open it in a Web browser. To access from a mobile device, forward this message to email@example.com to receive a mobile login URL. If you have concerns about the validity of this message, contact the sender directly. First time users - will need to register after opening the attachment. For more information, click the following Help link. Help - https://res.cisco.com/websafe/help?topic=RegEnvelope About Cisco Registered Email Service - https://res.cisco.com/websafe/about">https://res.cisco.com/websafe/about [full HTML version of the above, and an encrypted attachment]
Now I have another one. This time, it claims to be from the IT department (per the image header) of Hospital Corporation of America, via Proofpoint Encryption. The attachment link also happens to point to the legitimate-looking domain securemail.medcity.net.
[recipient address and boring info about time received] Thread-Topic: <ENCRYPT> Thread-Index: AdEzYsV/+0KIoAD4Rt2LdFw5Lb63sw== Date: Thu, 10 Dec 2015 15:52:29 +0000 Message-ID: <ABB9DC19260B3144A2214C004AE02EEC16876627@FWDCWPMSGHCMD3A.hca.corpad.net> Accept-Language: en-US Content-Language: en-US X-MS-Has-Attach: yes X-MS-TNEF-Correlator: x-originating-ip: [10.90.32.6] X-CFilter-Loop: Reflected Subject: Content-Type: multipart/mixed; boundary="PROOFPOINT_BOUNDARY_1" X-ProofpointSecure: Encrypted; app="filterd" MIME-Version: 1.0 --PROOFPOINT_BOUNDARY_1 Content-Type: multipart/alternative; boundary="PROOFPOINT_BOUNDARY_2" --PROOFPOINT_BOUNDARY_2 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit <div style="padding:15px 30px 10px 30px;font-size:16px;color:#555;font-weight:bold;font-family:Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;text-align:center;"> <div align="center">This is a secure, encrypted message. </div> </div> <div style="font-size:14px;color:#FF6417;font-weight:bold;line-height:normal;font-family:Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;padding:0px;margin:0 0 5px;"> <div align="left">To view your secure message: </div> </div> <div style="font-size:12px;color:#2F2E2E;font-weight:normal;line-height:16px;font-family:Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;text-align:left;padding:5px 0px 0px 0px;margin:0px;"> <p style="margin: 0 0 10px;"> Open the attachment (SecureMessageAtt.html) and follow the instructions. </p> </div> <div style="font-size:10px;color:#2F2E2E;font-family:Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;padding:0px;margin:0 0 5px;"> <p style="margin: 0 0 10px;"> Use <a href="https://securemail.medcity.net/securereader/help.jsf?lang=enus">this link</a> for more information to assist in retrieving your secure message. </P> </div> Click here https://securemail.medcity.net/formpostdir/securereader?id=AYXf6oh20zxMEe8%2BN%2B3YHmrJ0Bm7n9UR&brand=7748b5d to read the message on a mobile device or via Outlook Web Access. Please note: The above link will expire 4 days after receipt. [full HTML version of the above, and an encrypted attachment, and a few more "boundaries"]