How Haiku can prevent Spam, Part 2

Dennis Faas's picture

Today I received very disheartening email.

Al G. writes:

" Why has my subscription to the Infopackets Gazette newsletter suddenly ceased? "

I decided to check the subscriber base, and found Al's email address still in the list. I know that most of the newsletters have been successfully delivered because the web statistics reflect normal activity.

So, why wasn't the newsletter getting delivered to Al?

The only logical explanation I could think of -- other than Al's mailbox being over-quota -- was that his Internet Service Provider (ISP) may be incorrectly blocking this newsletter due to an anti-spam mail filter.

Junk email is a serious threat to the well-being of the Internet community and is no doubt on the rise. Drastic measures are being taken to decrease the number of unsolicited mails by Internet Service Providers, and that means some legitimate email is being incorrectly targeted.

Of course, Al isn't the first person to ask me this question. I am very concerned -- and well aware -- that this will be happening to more and more readers as time goes on. For all intents and purposes, a large number of users will not receive today's issue of the newsletter because I've mentioned the word spam too many times.

Oops, there I go again!

Not very long ago, Tony R. wrote in and told me about Habeas Sender Warranted Email:

" I was wondering whether you ever contemplated (as did Chris Pirillo for his Lockergnome Windows Daily newsletter) using Habeas headers* ( to bypass spam-blocking software? "

Side Note: In a nutshell, Habeas mail headers are pieces of "code" injected into an email. Internet Service Providers can scan for the Habeas headers to aid in the identification of genuine email, and to weight its legitimacy in conjunction with spam-blocking software. I have written a previous article about Habeas and how the entire process works, if you want to read up on it.

It all seems like a good idea to me, but I realize that not everyone is for Habeas.

In fact, I received one email from a fellow who threatened to unsubscribe himself from the list if I used Habeas.

The truth is that there is much debate from users who feel they should not have to pay for a license [from Habeas] to deliver legitimate email(s). I have read up on the Habeas controversy (IE: iCop Whistle Blower), as well as other articles which commend Habeas -- and have made a decision to use it.

My consensus is this: Anything which can help to ensure deliverability of this newsletter is worth having. And, this weekend, I finally found an alternate method which will allow me to inject Habeas Sender Warranted Email Headers into the newsletter and all other emails that are generated from the web server.

How do I know if Habeas will work?

A while ago, I wrote a program that goes through the web server log and tracks the number of undeliverable newsletter emails (also known as "550's").

I have been using this program for quite some time, and will continue to use it when measuring the effectiveness of Habeas. I can easily remove the Habeas headers and re-test periodically (using my program) in order to mark the differences.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet