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david.rahrer

Help me explain sudden Yahoo blocking

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I understand and appreciate the function of blocklists like SpamCop and I make use of them on my own email server. I realize that the inconvenience caused is part of an imperfect system but hopefully it generates some positive change. My problem is that an important client on my mail server is suddenly experiencing blocks of his email sent from SBCGlobal (which apparently now uses Yahoo mail) when he tries to send email to his office (using accounts on my server) from home.

The servers in question are Yahoo's and the latest one is 98.136.217.81 . I believe he has been using this setup for years but has never complained about blocks until a couple of days ago. The reports make it clear that SC has received lots of spam from these servers and many delisting requests. Since the servers cycle I thought it would go away quickly and so I whitelisted a couple of them temporarily. Unfortunately it still goes on.

My real question is two part. First, is there something new happening with spam activity with Yahoo causing more blocks? And second, depending on the answer to the former, is there a reasonable explanation that I can relay to the client -- possibly with some hope? I realize you suggest changing email accounts and I would be with you, but this is a very little "c" conservative company and that won't happen. I can't stop using SpamCop without increasing the flood of spam, so I'm asking for suggestions.

I realize I'm probably asking for an answer that can't be given, but maybe others have found a good way to relay this stuff to clients without trying to give them a course on how it all works.

Thanks.

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Hi, Mr Rahrer,

...Sorry to hear of your client's problem.

<snip>

My problem is that an important client on my mail server is suddenly experiencing blocks of his email sent from SBCGlobal (which apparently now uses Yahoo mail) when he tries to send email to his office (using accounts on my server) from home.

<snip>

Since the servers cycle I thought it would go away quickly and so I whitelisted a couple of them temporarily. Unfortunately it still goes on.

...Could you explain why you elected to whitelist the entire servers, thereby potentially letting in beaucoup spam as well as your client's e-mails, as opposed to whitelisting only your client's SBCGlobal e-mail address? Not possible for your e-mail setup?
My real question is two part. First, is there something new happening with spam activity with Yahoo causing more blocks?
...That would seem a certainty. If you've ever dealt with Yahoo!Mail Support, you will have learned that they are not the most technically savvy folks in the world in terms of spam and they refuse to accept e-mail reports of spam, at least via SpamCop's reporting system or even manually-generated e-mail complaints to their abuse address. They are (I presume) therefore not up-to-date on changes to the spam coming *from* their service.
And second, depending on the answer to the former, is there a reasonable explanation that I can relay to the client -- possibly with some hope?
...The explanation seems to me to be pretty simple: if your client wants his e-mail to be reliably delivered (to the degree that any e-mail can be said to have reliable delivery, which is questionable, since internet-based e-mail is not a guaranteed delivery mechanism), he will have to find a service that supports an environment freer of spammers.
I can't stop using SpamCop without increasing the flood of spam, so I'm asking for suggestions.

<snip>

...It's your absolute right to use the SpamCop blacklist to block e-mail but with such a choice comes the disadvantage you are experiencing (this is a real case of spam coming from Yahoo!Mail servers, which serve many people, both spammers and non-spammers, but the SpamCop blacklist has even been known to have apparently blocked innocent or near-innocent IP addresses, as well, for various reasons). SpamCop itself does not recommend using its blacklist to block incoming mail, but rather using it to isolate suspected spam for special handling, such as delivery to a special e-mail folder rather than to the users' main Inbox, so they can decide what to do with it at their leisure. For a more exhaustive answer, please see SpamCop Wiki article "What is the SpamCop Blocking List (SCBL)?"

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No doubt Yahoo! mail support is severely lacking.

It still seems like something has changed dramatically lately. In the last few months I've been getting several emails a week bounced back and it used to be more like one a year.

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No doubt Yahoo! mail support is severely lacking.

<snip>

...There were strings of months a few years back where multiple Yahoo!Mail servers would be prominent in SpamCop's "Hall of Shame" (since retired, as far as I know) and then the problem receded significantly. Perhaps Yahoo e-mail admins got focused by all the negative feedback and took effective steps to minimize all the spam but have since lost that focus in favor of the frequent Yahoo!Mail interface "enhancements" and rollout of features such as universal free POP....

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