Is Yahoo Now Even Worse On Spam?

When working on mailservers, I’ve noticed that Yahoo’s mailservers seem to “punish” others by sending code 421 (service not available) for a few minutes for a first report of spam that originated from there, longer for a second report and so on. Yahoo’s help pages suggest they do this if you don’t “comply with our guidelines (described below)” (which aren’t actually described below).

That system seems to completely screw everyone on a server if a user forwards their own email to Yahoo and then flags some as spam, or if a website user who registered with a Yahoo mail address then closes their Yahoo account without updating their registration details. In the worst cases, a server’s mail queue can become clogged with stuff that it can’t forward to Yahoo. I’ve suggested that server owners ban forwarding to Yahoo, but not all have done that yet.

Yahoo’s server-punishing tactics are particularly unfair because of the amount of spam we receive from Yahoo – when I tried rejecting that, the server tested seemed to get more 421 punishment for that. I now usually direct it to a blackhole, which feels a bit dangerous.

Now I’ve just seen this from Indymedia which makes it sound like Yahoo’s getting even worse recently:-

“Yahoo doesn’t make it so easy for us. They do (unintendedly) transport a remarkable amount of spam, often sent by robots which automatically (and wide scale) crack Yahoos’ new account signup CAPTCHAS (those images with the cats + dogs + digits + letters in them) just to relay their spam through Yahoo. So it’s not easy to determine who sends legitimate email through Yahoo and who does not.”

I wrote about some alternative service providers back in 2006, including ippimail, which Yahoo users might like to change to. I’d be interested in comments about any new arrivals in this field.

BT internet customers are probably using Yahoo-hosted email too. I recommend changing to The Phone Co-op, but my company is an agent for them, so I would say that, wouldn’t I?

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