In recent independent tests Spamhaus' block lists, used alongside a specially configured SpamAssassin, stopped 99.43%* of spam emails, with 0.02% false positives. These results are similar to some of the more expensive email filter solutions on the market. Perhaps it's time to consider a more cost-effective & simple anti-spam solution?

Using Spamhaus’s block lists with SpamAssassin isn’t new, what’s changed?

Until recently those using SpamAssassin and Spamhaus’s block lists had to rely on the programme’s default configuration, or, manually change SpamAssassin’s configuration based on what the user believed to be the best settings.

Now, users no longer have to rely on intuition or the defaults: we have created the optimum settings.  At a high-level, the experts at Spamhaus have introduced new analysis for the headers and tweaked both the rules and weighted scoring.

With these changes, you can achieve similar results you would expect from a costly email filter product, all for the price of a subscription to Spamhaus’s Blocklists via the Data Query Service (DQS), and the time taken to download the SpamAssassin add-on.

How do I get my hands on these recommended settings?

Firstly, it’s worth noting that this will only work for subscribers to the Spamhaus DQS. Additionally, you need access to all our blocklists, i.e., Spamhaus’ Content Blocklists including Domain Blocklist (DBL), Zero Reputation Domain (ZRD), Hash Blocklists (HBL) and Spamhaus’ IP Blocklists, which includes the Spamhaus Blocklist (SBL), the Exploits Blocklist (XBL) and the Policy Blocklist (PBL).

With all the above in place just go to and find ‘Data Query Service using SpamAssassin’ or click here, and download the instructions and Spamhaus’ SpamAssassin add-on. Naturally, if you are using a subprogram with SpamAssassin you will need to amend accordingly.

Effective email filters needn’t cost the earth, nor take excessive amounts of time to configure.  Download the config and sign up for a free 30-day DQS trial today, and see how simple it can be.


* The VBSpam results refer to the test configuration where Spamhaus’s data-sets were the only ones used: lookups to all other services supplying data were disabled. SpamAssassin users will further increase the effectiveness of this set-up by turning on services that deeply analyse mail contents such as the ClamAV open source anti-malware engine.

Related Products

Data Query Service (DQS)

Spamhaus’ Data Query Service (DQS) is an affordable and effective solution to protect your email infrastructure and users.

Using your existing email protection solution, you will be able to block spam and other related threats including malware, ransomware, and phishing emails.

The service has never failed and utilizes the longest established DNSBLs in the industry.

  • Proactive & preventative
  • Save on email infrastructure & management costs
  • Actionable


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