Blocked Emails – How do I tell

Today’s Question| " Is there some way I can tell if my emails are being blocked"

 I regret to say that I was not really able to dazzle the questions asked with my answer. I had to tell the user that you can’t tell. I explained that there are too many different ways to block spam, and there are too many different obeyed and unobeyed rules in SMTP to be able to accurately tell. What one company blocks another might not block, and both of those companies might not tell you that they blocked anything.

My user asked me a few follow on questions that I had to say no to as well:

  • He asked me about read receipts. I had to tell him that those work great inside of the company, but they don’t work outside of the company. They don’t work because there is no guarantee that the recipients sever will do anything with them. 
  • He asked me about NDR’s. I had to tell him that some companies don’t send NDRs. Some companies send blocked emails to blackholes because an NDR can notify spammers that they have something real or false, and it can add to the work load of an email server. 
  • He asked about message tracking. I told him that is only good inside of the Exchange organization. Once the email is handed to the recipients server we have no clue what happens to it.
  • He asked about putting a URL in the email that would tell us if someone opened the message. I told him that this was a great idea that spammers used a few years ago that is almost totally blocked and busted now, so that Idea won’t work.

In the end I told him that the only sure way to know was to call the person, or talk to them on IM to verify that the email made it there. I wish that I had a better answer but I don’t see that happening in the near future.

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