Yahoo and AOL DMARC Reject Policy Leads to Disabling of Microsoft Email Addresses on Mailing Lists

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Now that Yahoo and AOL are both stating through the DMARC p=reject that any email coming from a yahoo or aol address that isn’t sent from a yahoo or aol server should be rejected (bounced), problems are cropping up for Hotmail, Outlook, Live.com and MSN users, who are finding their own email addresses being removed from mailing lists for no apparent reason. But there is a reason. And it has to do with the recent changes that AOL and Yahoo have made.

 

[Read Why Yahoo Mail is Broken – the Yahoo DMARC Bouncing Rejection Thing Explained and Why AOL Email is Bouncing: AOL Copies Yahoo’s DMARC Policy]


 

Here’s what’s going on: The Microsoft properties (Hotmail, Outlook, MSN and Live.com) are all obeying Yahoo and AOL’s p=reject. That means that whenever an email from someone with a yahoo.com or aol.com address comes for someone with a hotmail.com, outlook.com, msn.com or live.com account, if that email “from” yahoo.com or aol.com isn’t actually sent from a yahoo or aol mail server, then it is being rejected (bounced).

Why would someone send email from a yahoo.com or aol.com address if they are actually sending it through another server? There are several legitimate reasons, such as for example, someone at work who sends a personal email to a non-work-related mailing list, so sends it from their personal yahoo.com or aol.com address, but it still goes through their work server. Or someone who signed up for a mailing list with their yahoo.com or aol.com email address years ago, and who now primarily uses another email system (say Gmail, for example), but can only post to the mailing list from their approved email address with which they originally signed up.

And this worked for years, but now suddenly, with the Yahoo and AOL DMARC policy changes, their email is being rejected by any mailing list member who has a Hotmail, Outlook, MSN or Live.com address. (And you can’t really blame Microsoft for following Yahoo’s and AOL’s policies, after all that’s what the authentication policies are all about – they are meant to be followed.)

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Now, if the rejected email was sent through a mailing list, then the mailing list receives the bounce from the Hotmail, Outlook, MSN or Live.com address. And guess what a bounce means to most mailing list software?

It means “the email address you tried to send this to is no longer a good email address – remove it from the mailing list.”

 

So now, as Microsoft properties are rejecting countless emails that are “from” a yahoo or aol.com address, but sent from another server, the Hotmail, Outlook, MSN or Live.com addresses to which those emails were being sent are being removed from mailing lists as they reject the email, because the rejection is taken to indicate that the rejecting hotmail.com, outlook.com, or Live or MSN.com address is no longer valid.

 

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