Hotmail: Twenty years ago this month...

Twenty years ago this month, HoTMaiL was acquired by Microsoft, going on to become MSN Hotmail, er, Windows Live Mail, er, Windows Live Hotmail, er, Outlook.com, or whatever it's called today as they merge the Outlook 365 and Hotmail platforms.

Read more about the Hotmail transition to Microsoft over at Ars Technica.

Top Five Spam Resource Posts of 2017

Hey, we made it! 2017 is finally drawing to a close! Let's take a moment to review the top five most popular Spam Resource posts this year. Anything to help take our minds off of the fresh hell that awaits us in 2018, right?

5. In 2017, it seemed like a lot of people needed help mitigating deliverability issues with Microsoft Hotmail / Outlook.com, making my summary overview on the topic the fifth most popular page on this site this year.

4. Even though this was published over ten years ago, people are still confused about what to do when an email message bounces back with a "we do not relay" error message. Google searches for help on this topic made this page the fourth most requested page on this site this year.

3. My explanation of the list-unsubscribe header and how Apple started handling the related unsubscribe functionality in the iOS native email client from the launch of iOS version 10 was the third most popular page on this site this year.

2. Lots of people are apparently wondering what Yahoo's domain names are. How come they don't publish an authoritative list? I guess their loss is my gain, making this page the second most popular page on this site this year.

1. And finally, backscatter -- that is, misdirected bounces coming back to you in response to mail that you did not send -- is still such a problem, that my page on the topic, published ten years ago, was the most popular page on Spam Resource this year.

Happy new year, everyone! Let's hope it gets better from here.

On the 12th day of Listmas...

Mickey Chandler just posted the 12th and final in his series of "the Days of Listmas" over at Spamtacular. Happy holidays!

LaPoste Now Offering DKIM-based ISP Feedback Loop

A representative of French post office and webmail provider LaPoste announced on LinkedIn yesterday that LaPoste.net now offers support for a DKIM-based ISP feedback loop, supplementing existing support for their IP address-based FBL.

And, it's true! When you login to fbl.postmaster.laposte.net, and click on "Create New Subscription," you are now greeted with two options, IP address-based FBL or DKIM-based FBL:


From the messaging on the website, the FBL service still seems to be provided by Return Path.

This is good news for senders that authenticate their mail via DKIM, especially those who send mail via shared IP addresses.

Did anyone recently notice that the Spamhaus XBL just got really big?

Ray from Spamhaus explains why in a new post. Spoiler alert: Looks like the Andromeda botnet and rise of IoT (Internet of Things) spam are to blame.

Inbox by Gmail will remind you to unsubscribe from unread promo emails

Engadget reports that Gmail's "Inbox by Gmail" web interface and Android app are proactively offering up a suggestion to unsubscribe from any promotional emails that haven't been opened in the past month.

This could be significant. Most good senders focusing on engagement are looking at six, twelve, or eighteen month engagement windows when considering who's still likely to want to receive their email messages, but Google is suggesting a much smaller window.

So many unanswered questions here. Will unsubscribes increase? We will see. And how many folks out there use "Inbox by Gmail" and will other email user interfaces follow suit?

Here's more on this from the XDA Developers blog.

Finding and deciphering email headers

Here's an article from Lifewire (formerly about.com) on how to get at and decipher full email headers. This link is worth saving for later, if you struggle with this.

H/T: Brian Krebs

Krebs: Phishers Are Upping Their Game. So Should You.

Brian Krebs recently published a most excellent article on the current state of phishing and what you can and should do to try to protect yourself as an email user. It's definitely worth a read.

The 12 Days of Listmas

🎵 On the first day of Listmas
   🎵 my data showed to me
🎵 something’s causing slow delivery…

Over on Spamtacular, Mickey Chandler is  publishing a series of posts for the 12 days of Listmas, talking about the things that can go wrong with deliverability and list hygiene during this most wonderful time of the year. Here's day one. And here's day two.

Help! I'm blocked at Verizon.net!

Hey! Are you finding your mail rejected when trying to send to verizon.net?

Remember that verizon.net email users now have their mail handled by AOL's systems. That means, if you're blocked at verizon.net, you're blocked at aol.com (as well as aim.com, cs.com, compuserve.com, netscape.net, wmconnect.com, wow.com, ygm.com).

So what you have here is an AOL issue, not a "Verizon" issue. What to do about AOL issues, I've blogged about right over here.

For a full list of all AOL domains, click here.

Note: AOL and Yahoo Mail are now owned by the same company, but as of December, 2017, their systems have not been combined. Thus, you should continue to handle AOL and Yahoo issues completely separately.