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Bethany E-mail Account

Bethany email accounts (students, faculty, staff, and alumni) are provided through Gmail:

Go to gmail.blc.edu.

Sign in with your Bethany username and password. You will not use your full email address to sign in at the above link.

If signing in doesn't work, follow the steps below.

  1. If you can't remember your password, please contact the Help Desk to get a new password.
     
  2. If you know your password, but your Bethany account was created after September 2012, or if you have not changed your password since then, please visit our Change Password page and then sign in to Gmail with your new password.
     
  3. If no Bethany logo appears on the Gmail login page, sign in using username@blc.edu and your Bethany password. This happens if you access Gmail directly without going to gmail.blc.edu first. Do not use First.Last@blc.edu or username@alum.blc.edu.
     
  4. To access your email with your phone or other mobile device, sign in using username@blc.edu and your Bethany password. Do not use First.Last@blc.edu or username@alum.blc.edu.
     
  5. To access your email from a desktop email client such Outlook, Thunderbird, or Postbox, your account settings must be configured as follows:

 

Troubleshooting

Help. I receive an error that my mailbox cannot be found. What do I do?

Your email mailbox has probably been moved to being hosted by Google. Use the link at the top of this page to access it, and follow the above instructions as needed.

Why won't my username/password work for Gmail?

  1. Bethany Gmail only uses passwords created or changed since September 2012, which you can do at www.blc.edu/changepassword.
  2. Check your username: If the Bethany logo shows, use just your username (example: jdoe). If the logo does not show, use username@blc.edu (example: jdoe@blc.edu). Do NOT use First.Last@blc.edu or username@alum.blc.edu.

What changes after the switch? What stays the same?

You will need to get your email from Gmail. Use the link at the top of this page to access it, and follow the above instructions as needed. Your email address(es) stay the same. If you received email at First.Last@blc.edu, this will continue to work. You will also be able to receive email at username@blc.edu.

Tips for reducing unsolicited (SPAM) email

My inbox is filling up with spam! Why is this happening?

Generally, spam tends to result from one or more of five different reasons.

 

First, if an e-mail address is posted on a publicly available website (a message board, for instance), sooner or later, it will begin receiving spam e-mails. Spammers frequently employ automated programs called "web crawlers" or "bots" that methodically search the Internet for e-mail addresses. The collected addresses are then sent spam messages, or sold to other spammers.

Second, many business and news websites require users to register with an e-mail address. Usually, the business will limit itself to sending e-mails about product offers (which can also be unwanted), and news websites will send out article notifications. Some websites, however, have no scruples about selling their lists of e-mail addresses, which often find their way into the hands of spammers.

Third, simply opening a spam e-mail can lead to still more spam. Many spam e-mails are nothing more than a link to an image file hosted on a spammer's server, or contain a small hyperlink. Once the e-mail is opened, the hyperlink is activated, and the spammer knows that the e-mail address is valid and can continue to receive spam e-mails.

Fourth, spam can arrive simply by automated guesswork. Many e-mail addresses follow standardized naming conventions (for instance, john.doe@blc.edu), and automated programs can easily generate a host of possible e-mail addresses. Most of the messages will be undeliverable, but some will get through.

Fifth, certain kinds of viruses and spyware contribute to spam. Some viruses and spyware programs are designed specifically to harvest e-mail addresses from a user's address book. Others use the computer itself to send out spam e-mails, taking addresses from the address book. These "botnets", as they are commonly known, generate a large percentage of spam e-mail.

Does Bethany have a spam filter?

We use a spam filter called Mail Foundry. While it does properly filter the vast majority of spam e-mail, occasionally some spam does get through. Marking an unwanted e-mail message as spam will help improve the filter's accuracy.

 

How can I best protect myself from spam?

Precautionary measures are the best protection against spam.

 

It's best to keep your e-mail address private, and give it out only when necessary. You should only share your Bethany e-mail address with people on campus, and with trustworthy persons.

Should you need to register at a website, or publicly post an e-mail address, it's best to have a separate e-mail address dedicated exclusively to that purpose. Yahoo, Hotmail, and Gmail all offer free e-mail accounts, which makes for a cheap and easy "secondary" e-mail account where spam would be less of an inconvenience.

I want to buy something from a website, and they need my e-mail address. Should I use my Bethany address?

Probably not. At the very least, the website will send you e-mails advertising productions and special promotions. Many online businesses have no qualms about selling lists of e-mail addresses, which could result in more spam.

 

Instead, use a secondary e-mail address (such as a free account with Yahoo or Hotmail), since receiving spam at that address might prove less of an inconvenience.

I've received a chain e-mail! Should I send it on to twenty new recipients?

No. Chain e-mails are often hoaxes. Furthermore, every time someone forwards the message, the recipients' e-mail addresses remained in the message's header, and those addresses easily can end up in the hands of spammers (if, for instance, one of the recipients has an address-harvesting virus on his computer).

 

I will not be able to check my e-mail for some time. Should I use an "out-of-office" autoresponder?

No. This can cause a problem colloquially known as "autoresponder hell", where two e-mail accounts, both set to autorespond, send each other thousands of "out-of-office" notifications. Additionally, if a spammer receives an "out-of-office" message from your account, that only confirms your e-mail address, thereby inviting more spam.

 

If you have other questions, please contact Bethany's Help Desk at 507-344-7411 or helpdesk@blc.edu.