what actually happens with rejected mail?

John Von Essen essenz at essenz.com
Mon Jun 30 10:57:06 PDT 2003

The reject email summary will most likely never reach the sender, but
things like "User Unknown" are communicated during the SMTP conversation,
in which the sending spammer will get some info indicating that you are a
bad recipient. Spammers usually try their best to get rid of addresses
that they know is bad. This is why milters are so good. You can have the
milter send back a 550 User unknown when you encounter spam.


On Mon, 30 Jun 2003, Chuck Swiger wrote:

> Marco Beishuizen wrote:
> [ ... ]
> > Everything is working fine, but now I wonder what happens with the
> > spammail that is being rejected? Are those spammails being deleted? Or
> > are they send back to my ISP? My maillogfiles show that spam is
> > correctly filtered, and a message with the errorcode is send back. But
> > who else is seeing those errormessages?
> Probably nobody.  Normally, when your mail server rejects an incoming message
> with a 5xx, the sending MTA is supposed to generate a DSN to the sender, letting
> them know that their attempt to mail you failed (with the reason you gave).
> In the case of spam, that address is typically forged and the spamware MTA may
> well simply drop the reject.
> --
> -Chuck
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