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Old 17 May 2019, 06:42 AM   #1
Bolman
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Kansas City
Posts: 86
Any reason for an increase in spam false positives?

In recent weeks, I'm seeing an increase in false positives getting shunted to my spam filter. An email from my wife went there, which never happened before. The same for a message from a colleague whose previous messages always went to my inbox; that one was costly because it was time-sensitive and I didn't see it in time.

I have one subscription to a service that sends me a message every weekday, and those have been going to Spam, even though I've been trying to retrain the filter by repeatedly marking them as non-spam. I've finally whitelisted the return address.

I haven't changed my spam settings, and I'm not seeing the VADE MECUM code that was the subject of another thread, but it seems as if something is different..
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Old 17 May 2019, 08:34 AM   #2
BritTim
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The full headers from the messages in question might be helpful in trying to suggest a cause. I have seen no uptick in false positives personally.
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Old 17 May 2019, 12:45 PM   #3
n5bb
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Irving, Texas
Posts: 8,537
Arrow A few ideas on reducing false positives

I suggest that you not post the complete full headers of any email (for security and privacy reasons). But you can post these headers:
  • X-Spam-known-sender (yes or no part only)
  • X-Spam-score
  • X-Spam-hits
  • Authentication-Results: Only post these tags:
    • dkim (pass or fail or other)
    • dmarc (pass or fail or other)
    • spf (pass or fail or other)
My suggestion is to always add a sender to your contacts list if you want to get more messages from them. To do this, when reading that good message click on the From name (not the address). You can then choose to Add that contact name and email address to your contacts list. Here are some additional suggestions:
  • In the Settings>Rules screen, enable "Never discard messages sent by my contacts".
  • In the Settings>Spam Protection screen:
    • What is your Protection level setting?
    • At the bottom of the screen in the Personal Spam filter section, are both numbers over 200? If not, please read "Your personal spam database".
  • Read this Fastmail help section and be sure you are leaving your non-spam messages in folders which are marked for spam learning as non-spam.
  • When you receive non-spam filed into your Spam folder, be sure to use the Not Spam button to return that message to your Inbox and mark it in your personal spam database as a good message. Don't manually move messages into or out of the Spam folder to/from other folders.
Whitelisting the From address usually works, but in a few cases the message may appear to have fake headers due to problems in the Authentication-Results section, and the contacts list whitelisting will be bypassed.
  • In this case, the X-Spam-known-sender header value will not be "yes", even though that From address is in your address book. This is usually because the message has been forwarded improperly.
  • You can add a custom rule to file those messages into a desired folder and stop Sieve processing before the spam filter is executed. I had to do this, and we can assist you with the Sieve code. The general idea is to add custom code in the first section (before section ### 1.) similar to:
    Code:
    if 
      allof(
      address :is "From" "[email protected]",
      header :contains "Subject" "Notification message subject"
      )
    {
      fileinto "INBOX.NotificationFolder";
      stop;
    }
Bill
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Old 18 May 2019, 01:37 AM   #4
Bamb0
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Thumbs down

I have been seeing this to many ppl I send email to lately...... My message goes to spam!!

Why???

My dad has an email acct on yahoo and when I send him an email with a link,IT GOES TO THE JUNK FOLDER! (Didnt used to ever happen)

Several times my email I send to a friend that uses AOL my stuff gets flagged and everything I send goes to her spam folder........ (Its a pain to remove it from there i guess)


Is this something email providers are doing??
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Old 18 May 2019, 05:37 AM   #5
n5bb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamb0 View Post
I have been seeing this to many ppl I send email to lately...... My message goes to spam!!...
This thread was about false positives when receiving email at Fastmail, but I will comment on your issues.
  • Email providers have made changes over the past few years to reduce spam. You may be sending messages in a manner which makes them look like spam to Yahoo and AOL.
  • Receiver: The basic instructions for most email systems to reduce false positives are:
    • Add your known good senders to the address book (contact list) at the email provider system. So this needs to be done at Yahoo and AOL.
    • If you see a false positive in your Spam folder, most email systems have a button so you can mark that message as not-spam. You need to use that button rather than moving the message in some other manner to your Inbox.
  • Sender: Email services now use various techniques to discover messages which are fake. The most common at this time are SPF, DKIM, and DMARC (which uses both SPF and DKIM and adds additional requirements). These techniques rely on policies set up by the owners of domains.
    • This means you need to be very careful about the From domain of emails you send and whose email server you use. If you try to send a message with a From address at a yahoo.com domain but you send it through the Gmail or Fastmail outgoing server, the receiving email system may reject your message or mark it as spam. If you use a Yahoo From address you need to send the message from a Yahoo account.
    • Automatically forwarding (redirecting) messages nearly always breaks SPF and sometimes breaks DKIM. This can lead to DMARC failure. Manually forwarding a message is fine.
Bill
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Old 18 May 2019, 06:41 AM   #6
Bamb0
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Thank you Billy I realise this thread is on the fastmail sect but it isnt only happening on fastmail....

My friend on AOL does have me in her address book and I think my dad does I dunno.....

This just started happening a few months ago....... (Anytime I email my dad with an http:// link it goes to spam (ANY LINK))
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Old 18 May 2019, 01:12 PM   #7
n5bb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamb0 View Post
Thank you Billy I realise this thread is on the fastmail sect but it isnt only happening on fastmail....

My friend on AOL does have me in her address book and I think my dad does I dunno.....

This just started happening a few months ago....... (Anytime I email my dad with an http:// link it goes to spam (ANY LINK))
Have you tried testing this yourself? I tried this with my Yahoo test account and I can't duplicate your problem. I sent several test messages containing a link to this forum http://www.emaildiscussions.com and they all appeared in my Yahoo inbox.

I assume you had your dad go to the Settings area in his Yahoo email and check the blocked addresses and filters. If not, he needs to read the Yahoo email help on spam filtering.

Here is a test you dad can do: Send a message from his Yahoo account to himself. Use "Test" for the subject and "http://yahoo.com" for the message body. After sending that email to himself, it should show up in his inbox within a few minutes (Yahoo is often rather slow). When I try this, the message shows up in my Yahoo email inbox. If your theory is correct (all messages with a URL are treated as spam) he can easily see if this is true. It's possible that he set up a filter so that all messages with the string "http:" are filed to spam.

IMHO, Yahoo and AOL are troublesome email systems. They have historically been known for being a target for spammers (both sending and receiving at that domain). But this is the Fastmail forum, so you need to either contact Yahoo and AOL for assistance or post messages in the general email support forum here at EMD if you want Yahoo and AOL users to respond.

Bill (my name is NOT Billy)
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Old 18 May 2019, 01:21 PM   #8
Bamb0
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Thank you my friend for your assistance and kindness
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Old 18 May 2019, 01:32 PM   #9
n5bb
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Location: Irving, Texas
Posts: 8,537
The only thing worse than too much spam is too many false positives! I understand your concern and hope your family and friends get this repaired.

Bill
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