Thursday, May 11, 2006

Gmail on the SORBS blocking list

I just tried sending a reply back to Vodafone customer services regarding an issue I've got with my online account. I used my Gmail account (of course) only to get the following sent back:

PERM_FAILURE: SMTP Error (state 8): 550 5.7.1 Mail from refused - see

After a quick check, I found that it was a Google assigned IP address. After doing a search of the SORBS database, it was confirmed. It's interesting to note though that the PTR record has changed from what was listed at the time of the SORBS database entry to but that would not avoid the block, since it is IP based. The change must have been for another reason.

Record Created: Sat Apr 22 04:30:03 2006 GMT
Record Updated: Sat Apr 22 04:30:03 2006 GMT
Additional Information: Received: from ( []) by (Postfix) with ESMTP id 670B611439 for <[email]>; Sat, 22 Apr 2006 13:15:05 +1000 (EST)
Currently active and flagged to be published in DNS
If you wish to request a delisting please do so through the Support System.

I noticed that Sun is one of the companies involved in SORBS, so I tried sending an email from Gmail to my Sun address but it went through okay, strange. Maybe Sun is part of it, but not actually using it. Anyway, it seems that people who are using SORBS can't currently receive mail from Gmail users.

The funny thing is that Google is part of SORBS too - so part of it, but blocked by it! If Google were using SORBS, then it would mean that Gmail users would probably be unable to send email to other Gmail users unless Google had something in place to always allow it, regardless of any blocking list or system. Maybe Google are using it, but I don't think they currently are.

Aftering seeing the current block myself and typing this post, I did a quick Google search and found discussion about this issue. It seems that Spamcop have also blocked Gmail, but at present the IP in question is not in the database. The blocks are due to Gmail not including the injecting user IP in the headers, which in one respect gives an element of privacy but something that nobody else really does and it also allowed spammers to hide.

I guess I won't be emailing Vodafone for a while, not from Gmail anyway. I wonder what other companies are using SORBS, that I won't be able to contact using Gmail? This is an example of when free email isn't always the best option but I'm sure it will be sorted out soon.

Post ID: 778, posted by jase at 12:08 PM
Permalink | TrackBack ID: 751, (0) | Category: Internet | Google Search
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