How to Reduce SPAM and Protect your Reputation

Dealing with email sent to non-existent mailboxes

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Reducing SPAM and protecting your email reputation is an ongoing project, your job is never done. There are however some tricks, and this is one of them.

Spammers send emails to non-existent email addresses all the time. It’s part of their strategy. Here’s why.

Let’s imagine you have setup a mailbox for your domain,

All email sent to will arrive at your inbox. So far, so good. So… What happens to emails sent to

This is determined in your Mail Settings in the Plesk panel. There’s three options.

1) Catch-all method: If you have setup a catchall to, then emails sent to (and in fact any email for will arrive in your inbox – it won’t take long to fill this mailbox with this catchall email spam.

2) Forward to address method: To prevent filling up with spam, you may choose to send all your spam emails to an old Gmail account, Great, no spam for your mailbox! Well, not so great i’m afraid. This is potentially disastrous. Now Google will receive all your spam, sent from – it won’t be long before your domain name and IP are blocked on the global blacklists. A nightmare to clear up.

Here’s the solution you have been waiting for.

3) Reject method: Using this method, the spam emails are not delivered at all. The connection attempt is rejected at the SMTP server level. No email to deliver, no email to bounce. This is the recommended and best method for dealing with emails sent to non-existent mailboxes – and it’s really easy to do.

Time to login to your Plesk Panel and set this up

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This will not eliminate all SPAM emails, nor will it guarantee your domain/IP will never be blacklisted, but, it definitely helps. If you do not “Reject” then SPAM and blacklisting is eventually inevitable.

Getting BadMailFrom Error: Cannot Send Email

emailHave you triggered the BadMailFrom Spam Trigger?

If you are getting BadMailFrom message when trying to send email then one of the following has happened:
  1. You have sent a large number of emails from an account and the recipients have marked some of this email as SPAM
  2. Your account has been hacked and a spammer is sending emails from your account

The BadMailFrom filter stops SPAM before it gets ‘too’ serious. The filter is automatically removed after a short period of time. If the problem persists the lock will be in place for a longer period.

The recommended actions you should take are:

  • Ensure you are sending emails only to recipients that are expecting the email
  • If you are sending to a large number of recipients try spreading out the mailshot (over a number of hours or days)
  • If you did not send a quantity of outgoing mail then change your mailbox password straight away.
It is not possible for our Support Staff to reset the BadMailFrom trigger. Simply await it to reset. The trigger does not affect incoming mail.

Apple Mail Cannot Send Emails

emailSMTP Send Problems with Apple Mail

If you are having problems with Apple Mail SMTP using IMAP, ensure you are using the following settings:

Mail > Preferences > SMTP > Edit SMTP Server List > Advanced

Automatically detect and maintain account settings: No
Port: 587
Use SSL: No
Authentication: MD5 Challenge-Response
Allow insecure authentication: Yes

For more information: How to setup Apple Mail

Plesk 12 – Setting Up Your Email

How to Setup Email Services for your Web Site

Screen Shot 2015-06-03 at 12.28.22Your Web Hosting Service comes equipped with the very latest in email technology. It’s very easy to use if you use the RoundCube Webmail service as you do not need to configure or install anything.

However, many clients prefer to use their own local email client and for this reason we have created a number of setup guides for the most popular applications.

Microsoft Outlook

Microsoft Outlook Express

Mozilla Thunderbird

Apple Mail

Apple iPhone or iPad

Email Port Settings

Ports for IMAP, POP and SMTP Email Services

Port Numbers for our Email Services

There are a few different ports used for mail services. Depending on how you would like to connect (encrypted or unencrypted) will dictate which ports you should be using. Where possible, use SSL. Some older devices and email clients may need to use unencrypted.

POP3 Server – Incoming Messages

  • Non-Encrypted -> AUTH -> Port 110
  • Secure (SSL) -> SSL -> Port 995

SMTP Server – Outgoing Messages

  • Non-Encrypted -> AUTH -> Port 587
  • Secure (TLS) -> StartTLS -> Port 587
  • Secure (SSL) -> SSL -> Port 465

IMAP Server – Incoming and Outgoing

  • Non-Encrypted -> AUTH -> Port 143
  • Secure (SSL) -> SSL -> Port 993