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Question about Envelope-to: x / X-RcptTo


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Hi - when someone reports spam and the report lists 'Envelope-to: x' and X-RcptTo is missing is there an easy way to determine where the mail was sent to?

So if we have some reported spam we would obviously like to check if the person who reported the spam was signed up to recieve mailings.


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If you do not have a confirmed subscription mailing list, then you are probably sending unsolicited email. A confirmed subscription list is a list where someone signs up for the mailings, then receives a confirmation email from you. If the confirmation email is not returned to you, then you do not put them on the mailing list. If the confirmation email is returned to you, then you will have a unique token identifying that email address. If the person does report one of your mailings as spam, then you will have proof that person did sign up and confirmed the sign up.

No one can help you determine why you got a spam report unless you provide the IP address that the report was sent to. There are several reasons why you may have gotten a report. Often, a spamcop report is a warning signal that you have an infected computer or that your list has been corrupted and you are sending emails to people who don't want them. Fix the problem now and avoid getting on blocklists that are not so easy to get off.

If it does turn out that you have a confirmed subscription list, someone can tell you how to contact the reporter and tell him that he has reported in error.

However, spamcop will not tell you what was in the 'Envelope to' and always ignores 'X' headers. You will not be able to remove that person from your list and avoid future reports.

Miss Betsy

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Are you BCCing the messages to the actual recipient? If so, I would strongly recommend against this practice, as it can be as much of a pain for the recipient as for you to try to identify who the message was sent to. Especially if you expect them to reply to the message to remove themselves from the list, as many people receive mail to several email addresses at one location.

Ideally, any emailing you send out should contain wording similar to:

"This message was sent to you[at]yourdomain.com because you signed up to receive it at www.ourwebsite.com from IP address on 1/1/2007. If you know longer wish to receive this mailing, click on this link <link to automatic unsubscribe page> to remove yourself from the list automatically."

That will cut down on the amount of spam reports against you dramatically, as it will have a tendancy to jog their memories about when and where they signed up for the list.

As was mentioned above, it is also VERY important to make sure you are confirming subscriptions to your mailing list.

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