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Use of aliases as a spam filter

shermans
Rising Star
Posts: 1,032
Thanks: 27
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Registered: 07-09-2007

Use of aliases as a spam filter

I have my own domain.  For more years than I care to remember, I have a long list of aliases for my domain (50 or more), which are then all automatically re-directed to my Plusnet account by the domain host.  Any email with an unrecognised alias is re-directed to a blackhole, which I imagine cuts down much untargeted spam with random aliases.  For example, my electricity supplier has my email address registered as "electricity@mydomain.co.uk", and Google has my email address registered as "google@mydomain.co.uk".  Both are re-directed to my Plusnet account.  But "billclinton@mydomain.co.uk" would be an unrecognised alias and sent to a blackhole (if the cap fits.....)
If one of those aliases is hi-jacked by a spammer, then I simply change the alias name, and I change the rgistered email address with my contact.  However, firstly I imagine this all puts a small overhead on my domain host, and secondly, I have to rely on my domain host being reputable - I have had the odd problem where emails with attachments have gone astray, but nothing regular and 99.9% gets through as far as I know.
It occurs to me that I could in fact set up a similar number of aliases on my Plusnet account, rather than by my domain host, and re-direct all traffic from my domain directly to my Plusnet account.  Anything not addrressed to a recognised alias should then be sent by Plusnet to a black hole.  This transfers the overhead to Plusnet of course from my domain host.
I wonder
a) whether that is advisable
b) how I would do it.
I could set up separate mailboxes for each alias, which seems cumbersome because then my email client would have to search all 50 mailboxes, which would be painful and probably slow.  Is there another alternative using the new Ironbridge functionality ?
6 REPLIES
Community Gaffer
Community Gaffer
Posts: 12,799
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Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Use of aliases as a spam filter

I'm assuming you mean IronPort? Wink
If so then what you're suggesting sounds perfectly plausible (and a lot less cumbersome). One thing though, do you have a website associated with the domain? If not then you can just transfer the domain in for hosting.
To do this you'd need to speak to the company you pay for the domain and ask them to change the 'authoritative nameservers' to NS1.FORCE9.NET and NS2.FORCE9.NET. Once you've done this you need to raise a ticket requesting that we transfer your domain in for *hosting only*. This will take a day or two to fully propagate but once it has email sent to mailbox@mydomain.co.uk will point to exactly the same place as mailbox@username.plus.com
If you create an alias for the .plus.com address, it is automatically applied to the domain (as they're essential the same mailbox).
Hope that makes sense?

Bob Pullen
Plusnet Products Team
If I've been helpful then please give thanks ⤵

shermans
Rising Star
Posts: 1,032
Thanks: 27
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Registered: 07-09-2007

Re: Use of aliases as a spam filter

Thanks for that.  I do have a website attached to the domain but I also use some of my Plusnet webspace for it.  I prefer to keep my domain outside Plusnet as a fall back position - if I ever wanted to change ISP (perish the thought and that is highly unlikely unless Plusnet gets sold by BT to TalkTalk!), then I have more independence because I would be able to just redirect all mail to my new ISP without changing any email addresses.
Going back to aliases, I see there is a facility to register aliases with Plusnet, but is there a limit ? 
What I do not understand is how Plusnet would know to consign all unrecognised aliases to join the politicians in the blackhole ?  Would that perhaps be done by using a Catchall mailbox in addition to the aliases ?
Community Gaffer
Community Gaffer
Posts: 12,799
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Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Use of aliases as a spam filter

You'd have a single mailbox, turn catch-all off and then set up aliases for the addresses you do use and point them to your mailbox. Anything not addressed to an alias or the mailbox would rejected.

Bob Pullen
Plusnet Products Team
If I've been helpful then please give thanks ⤵

shermans
Rising Star
Posts: 1,032
Thanks: 27
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Registered: 07-09-2007

Re: Use of aliases as a spam filter

Thanks, that sounds like the answer I need.  It's just a question of the time needed to set up 50 mailboxes !
With my domain host, I can easily test that this works, because I can re-direct to two email addresses for each alias.  I can therefore leave things as they are and add a second alias@myname.plus.com, in which case I should then receive two copies.  If all works well, then I can delete the original redirect.
Thanks again.
Superuser
Superuser
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Registered: 06-04-2007

Re: Use of aliases as a spam filter

Quote from: shermans
Thanks, that sounds like the answer I need.  It's just a question of the time needed to set up 50 mailboxes !

Was this an unintentional slip with terminology, did you mean 50 aliases? All these would be set to deliver to just one mailbox, which is where your email client would pick up mail.
David
shermans
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Posts: 1,032
Thanks: 27
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Registered: 07-09-2007

Re: Use of aliases as a spam filter

Ooops, yes, sorry I did mean 50 aliases Roll eyes not mailboxes  !