Microsoft will be removing SmartScreen from upcoming versions of Exchange Server and Outlook for Windows. The company is shuttering the service entirely. Update support will end for SmartScreen on Exchange Server 2016 and earlier (2013, 2010, and 2007). Outlook 2016 for Windows and earlier (2013, 2010, 2007) and Outlook 2011 for Mac update support will also end.
In an official announcement, Microsoft said all this will be happening on November 1, 2016. If you are unfamiliar with SmartScreen, it is a spam filter for Outlook desktop and Exchange. The service checks each email to create a message Spam Confidence Level (SCL), which filters spam to the junk folder.
Microsoft has supported SmartScreen with updates to ensure the evaluation filters are up-to-date. Essentially the service gives customers improved tools to enhance their junk email protection. Despite this, the company says the service is no longer useful.
In its blog, Microsoft points out that the volume of modern spam means SmartScreen is not a solid prevention tool. These days, spammers will randomize campaigns and a software created in 2003 is now obsolete. Reputation hijacking from legitimate domains are beyond SmartScreen’s capabilities.
Luckily, the company is not leaving users out in the dark. Exchange Online Protection replaces SmartScreen to filter spam. EOP is a cloud-based solution integrated into Outlook.com and Office 365, it can be bought for the on-premises Exchange Server. Microsoft describes EOP as such:
“Microsoft Exchange Online Protection (EOP) is a cloud-based email filtering service. That helps protect end users and organizations against spam and malware, and includes features to safeguard organization from messaging-policy violations”