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Old 17 Feb 2018, 02:02 AM   #16
FredOnline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesHenderson View Post
admin-mail at hughes.net doesn't exist.

I have always found this link useful...
I had never heard of mailtester before.

At first glance, looks very interesting, but then I'm thinking what is the owner of the website getting out of this?

Then I had a look at their privacy policy, which looks like it's been copied and pasted from another website.

It may mean nothing, but I would be interested to hear others thoughts on this.
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Old 17 Feb 2018, 02:19 AM   #17
janusz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FredOnline View Post
At first glance, looks very interesting, but then I'm thinking what is the owner of the website getting out of this?

Then I had a look at their privacy policy, which looks like it's been copied and pasted from another website.
Tricky, these ones....
What is (or rather: was) the owner of emaildiscussions.com getting out of it?
How many really original & different versions of the privacy policy can even the most talented hack write?
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Old 17 Feb 2018, 02:21 AM   #18
JamesHenderson
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FredOnline View Post
I had never heard of mailtester before.

At first glance, looks very interesting, but then I'm thinking what is the owner of the website getting out of this?

Then I had a look at their privacy policy, which looks like it's been copied and pasted from another website.

It may mean nothing, but I would be interested to hear others thoughts on this.
He's an individual (Brecht Sanders). In the FAQ, he wrote this:
A lot of people come to me asking if a certain e-mail address is having problems or why a certain e-mail address doesn't work. Usually the answer is in the bounce-mail, but often it is in such technical terms most people don't know what it means.
There are some routine tests I usually do to find out more about an e-mail address.
I decided to automate these tests, and make them available for everybody on this site.
I don't think this is anything more than someone kindly sharing a script they wrote,.

[edited for typos]
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Old 17 Feb 2018, 02:44 AM   #19
FredOnline
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Originally Posted by janusz View Post
What is (or rather: was) the owner of emaildiscussions.com getting out of it?
Good question!
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Old 17 Feb 2018, 04:35 AM   #20
noclue
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Thank you! This looks really useful. Might save us a few headaches.
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Old 21 Feb 2018, 04:24 PM   #21
noclue
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Although the FM letterhead didn't come through in the copy/paste attempt, this is from the "Abuse Department:"

That definitely looks like a phishing attempt.. I am not sure if the phish is designed you to tell you that your hughes.net account is blocked or that your FastMail is blocked. That was definitely not from us. If you have a hughes.net account, and if you are unsure, I would suggest getting in touch with them, but if you ask me, this is most likely a phishing attempt.

I didn't include the name of the person who wrote to me because I didn't clear it with the author first.
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Old 21 Feb 2018, 04:31 PM   #22
JamesHenderson
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Originally Posted by noclue View Post
That definitely looks like a phishing attempt.
Agreed as the sender's email does not exist.
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Old 21 Feb 2018, 09:24 PM   #23
xenas
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Looks like phishing to me. If it's not that important, just delete the email!
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Old 22 Feb 2018, 05:40 AM   #24
BritTim
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesHenderson View Post
Agreed as the sender's email does not exist.
While I agree that this is a phishing attempt, I would counsel against relying on services that indicate whether or not email addresses are valid. There is no 100% reliable way that any service can tell. Both false positives and false negatives are quite common.
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Old 22 Feb 2018, 04:37 PM   #25
janusz
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Both false positives and false negatives are quite common.
Can you elaborate?
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 07:15 AM   #26
BritTim
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Originally Posted by janusz View Post
Can you elaborate?
This is a large and complex subject. However, here are some of the biggest challenges:
  • "Accept all domains". What this refers to is the policy followed by many mail services (especially those for corporate users) to not reveal which emails addresses are valid, and which are invalid. This policy is followed so as not to make life easy for spammers.
  • "Greylisting". This commonly used technique will always temporarily reject any email from a source it does not recognize. This can be circumvented by retrying checks later. However, it means any check must be submitted with the intention of receiving a reply on whether an email address is valid, perhaps, 30 minutes later. Obviously, the email checker must also have the ability to detect likely greylisting, and retry accordingly.
  • "Bounce rate databases".Many free services rely on these. Avoid services that rely on this.They deliver high rates of false negatives.
  • "Most of the largest consumer email services (such as those from Google, Yahoo and Microsoft) have their own anti spam measures that create a huge challenge for email checkers. Various techniques (that are service dependent) have been developed to deal with this. Even the best of them basically need to balance some level of false negatives against false positives.
To finish, some of the better services will dramatically reduce their reporting of false positives and negatives by giving an undetermined status when an answer can only be given with a low degree of confidence.
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