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Plusnet Usergroup » All Users - The Open Forum » Plusnet Customer Service Issues » Plusnet on several spam blacklists - tech support don't care
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Author Topic: Plusnet on several spam blacklists - tech support don't care  (Read 7942 times)
Mycroft

Posts: 2

« on: May 08, 2006, 05:04:13 pm »

I discovered that one of the relay servers at plusnet is on several SPAM blacklists since 16th APRIL 2006! This means that any email that is relayed through this server will be filtered by anyone subscribing to those SPAM blacklists or using services that filter SPAM.

Have a look on http://dsbl.org/listing?212.159.14.131 if you are interested.

Having been with Plusnet / F9 for many years (yes I'm another loyal customer!) I thought that tech support would be very concerned and get this resolved.

It appears from the dialogue I have had with them, that they are more concerned with "putting people on hold" rather than looking into the problem.

Considering the recent email delay issues it does beg the question, is there something that Plusnet are not telling us?

What follows is the transcript of the ticket I raised for anyone concerned by this..........

Ticket: 19310150
Assigned
Raised: 2006-05-04 10:01:13
 by: You
2006-05-04
10:01:13
You
Open : [Support Wizard Journey]
[Technical query]
[Other]
[Customer couldn't find a wizard option for his query please review the need to change the wizard]
[Additional Information]
PLUSNET HAVE GOT THEMSELVES ONTO AN EMAIL BLACKLIST AT DSBL! IT APPEARS THAT IP ADDRESS 212.159.14.131 resolved as pih-relay04.plus.net IS ON AN EMAIL BLACKLIST AND THIS IS CAUSING MY CLIENTS PROBLEMS TRANSMITTING EMAIL VIA THIS RELAY.
PLEASE INVESTIGATE URGENTLY.
PS IF YOU HAD A SYSTEM FOR IT PROFESSIONALS LIKE ME TO CONTACT YOU ON A PRIORITY NUMBER YOU WOULD NOT HAVE TO WAIT FOR HOURS TILL YOU PICK THIS MESSAGE UP.
2006-05-04
15:43:25

CSC Agent
Actioned : Dear Mr Rowe,
Please forward us a mail header so we may request removal. Thank you.
Regards,

To administer your account and for all your help and support requirements visit http://portal.plus.net/index_nlp.html
2006-05-05
11:08:01
You
Assigned : Look at the spam block list yourself! I did and saw that DSBL sent your relay server test messages to verify that you had an open relay and have published the results on their site. It is there for the world to see and very embarassing for you. I would suggest that you fix it asap.
2006-05-05
12:15:05

CSC Agent
Actioned : Dear Mr Rowe,
We need a copy of the email header as it allows our network enginners to investigate this further and remove our relay.plus.net server of the list.
Regards,

To administer your account and for all your help and support requirements visit http://portal.plus.net/index_nlp.html
2006-05-05
13:13:38
You
Assigned : I am agast.
I am trying to do you lot a favour and would have thought that someone there would understand the implications of this.
Since no one there can be bothered to look this up on any spam block list I will even give you a link http://dsbl.org/listing?212.159.14.131 which clearly shows that your server has been tagged as an open relay server and has been since 16 APRIL - THREE WEEKS!!!!!!!!!!!!
This means that anyone who uses the DSBL (and other block lists) will treat any email with that server's IP in the header as SPAM. Because it only affects one of your relay servers, this will result in intermittant email problems.
I am shocked that you do not have a daily check on block lists to avoid such embarassment.
2006-05-06
14:59:48

CSC Agent
Actioned : Dear Mr Rowe,
We do understand the urgency of the situation and as soon as you send the requested header we will resolve the matter with due speed.
Regards,

To administer your account and for all your help and support requirements visit http://portal.plus.net/index_nlp.html
2006-05-08
13:17:33
You
Assigned : HELLO!!!!
IS ANYONE READING AND UNDERSTANDING WHAT I AM SAYING?Huh
YOU DON'T NEED ANY EMAIL HEADER TO ACTION THIS PROBLEM.
IT IS YOU - PLUSNET - THAT IS ON THE SPAM LIST. I HAVE BEEN VERY GENEROUS TO YOU BY PROVIDING YOU WITH THE LINK TO THE DSBL SITE AND CANNOT BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE DRAGGING YOUR HEELS OVER SUCH A SERIOUS MATTER.
THIS IS SOMETHING THAT IS AFFECTING ALL (YES ALL) OF YOUR CUSTOMERS WHO ARE LUCKY ENOUGH TO MAKE USE OF THAT RELAY SERVER AND ARE SENDING TO SOMEONE USING SPAM LIST FILTERING.
CONSIDERING YOU HAVE ALSO BEEN REPORTING EMAIL PROBLEMS I SUSPECT THAT YOU HAVE BEEN COMPROMISED BY AN EMAIL SPAMMER DUE TO HAVING THIS SERVER AS AN OPEN RELAY. IS THIS WHY YOU DON'T WANT TO LOOK AT THE DSBL LIST?
2006-05-08
13:22:23

CSC Agent
Actioned : Dear Mr Rowe,
Please refrain from using all capitals on your tickets, as this can be regarded as shouting, and makes it harder to read.
Also, we would need a copy of the headers to pass onto DSBL before they will remove us.
Regards,

To administer your account and for all your help and support requirements visit http://portal.plus.net/index_nlp.html
2006-05-08
16:22:31
You
Assigned : Please refrain from using such superficial answers then and do something about the problem instead of procrastinating.
Personally I don't give too hoots if you want to remain on the DSBL list; it is your embarrassment not mine! If you care to read the DSBL removal instructions you would know that me providing you with an email header has nothing to do with getting you removed nor does the lack of it prevent you from seeing the issue for yourself.
I thought that I would do you guys a favour and point out something that you had obviously missed. If this is the way you treat long standing customers who are providing you with helpful feedback then it does not bode well for your future especially considering the disasters you have had over the last few months. Hardly the sort of service or behaviour I would expect from a professional organisation.
Do what you will with the information I have given you.

After you have eliminated the obvious, whatever remains must be true!
petervaughan
Usergroup Member

Posts: 2512


« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2006, 05:31:26 pm »

My only comments at this time are:

Why could you not supply the headers as requested. It's not a difficult thing to do and is required, as indicated several times, to progress this problem.

Also I would suggest in future, no matter how frustrated or angry you may be, you don't use capitals in replies as it often has the completely opposite affect to what you may have wanted e.g. it means people are less likely to help you because you are effectively shouting at them.

Yes, the problem should be sorted out but PN need the evidence in order to do that.
jwhiting

Posts: 86


« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2006, 07:45:18 pm »

Yes, we're listed in a couple of the DSBL lists. However, we're listed in multihop, which is something that they don't suggest using, due to the fact that it can contain a high number of false positives and also because of the way we have our email servers configured they can show up in this list from time to time.

The other list that we're in is unconfirmed, and this is another list that they don't recommend using, again due to the high number of false positives. Their own words are that this should only be used for software such as Spamassassin, as part of a scoring system, if at all.

We do take things such as this seriously, and the issue will be looked at by out networks team. Though simply having our server removed from the list doesn't solve the problem, if this has been caused by anything other than someone falsely reporting spam.

Regards,

Jon Whiting
Mycroft

Posts: 2

« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2006, 10:48:39 am »

laugh Thank you JWhiting for an excellent response to the issue I raised. I realise that this method of SPAM identification should not be used but unfortunatly it is in use and provides one logical explaination to the observation that email has been intermittantly failing to reach some destinations.

I have also had a professional answer from another member of Plusnet Tech Support a copy of which is listed for everyone to see how easily the problem should have been handled in the first place.

2006-05-08
16:51:17

CSC Agent
Actioned : Dear Mr Rowe,
Please accept my apologies for the delay in resolving this problem.
We are working to have the blacklist corrected. We do value customer feedback, and I'm sorry if you feel we have not been working to resolve the problem.
Regards,

To administer your account and for all your help and support requirements visit http://portal.plus.net/index_nlp.html
2006-05-09
09:37:56
You
Assigned : Thank you for a professional response. I will close this ticket.

 Sad Thank you petervaughan for your unhelpful comments. They remind me that most of the people who reply to postings never contribute anything positive which why I hardly ever bother contributing to any forumns.

If you don't know why an email header could not be provided then you should not have contributed to this article.

Furthermore, do not assume that you are the only person in the world who has an understanding of Netiquette and do not presume to lecture others who perhaps understand its use better.

The "evidence" required for Plusnet Tech Support was provided  and takes seconds to verify on any spam list lookup site. I suggest that you read articles in more detail and reply only if you understand their content and have something relevant to contribute.

After you have eliminated the obvious, whatever remains must be true!
Liam

Posts: 2743


WWW
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2006, 11:25:26 am »

Are the posting of agent names allowed over here?

Liam Martin
PlusNet UserGroup Member & Ex-PlusNet Comms Team Staffer!
BBYW & Business Premier User | DG834G Lover
Wormeries
wildmind
Guest
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2006, 11:29:20 am »

No they aren't Liam....

Just hadn't had time to remove them Wink
sharkyinternet

Posts: 557

« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2006, 12:38:34 pm »

oh god what a operning post this was lol  lol
Ultra

Posts: 777

WWW
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2006, 05:03:23 pm »

I think it demonstrates a couple of things - first that a customer while meaning to be "helpful" can get so het up about a matter they let their enthusiasm/exasperaton reach "shouting" level and merely annoy CS people, and second that while some header might not be available, just forwarding the URL in the first post, to back up the comment, would probably have been a better idea than making the first post all caps, and doing a bit of willy-waving with the "if you had a system for IT Professionals like me..."  (made me laugh when I saw that line...)

So, 27 hours after first contact is when the URL is sent on.  Not the most professional way to go about submitting info...  I make mistakes, I am willing to admit, but I hope Mr Rowe can agree that this is a great example of how not to "win friends and influence people".   I know the intention was well-meaning, but there was perhaps a bit too much "attitude" in a few of the comments submitted to CS.  I certainly don't envy them the task of reading such messages from customers...

While I have also seen comments from Peter Vaughan that I might disagree with, I think his main points were "spot on" today, and no surprises that the comments didn't meet with the OP's approval.  Sure, whoever asked about "providing a header" failed to understand the problem, and while it's fairly easy to go and look up various spam blacklists, it is far better, if submitting a comment to CS staff (and it is bound, at some point, to be read by a person "on their own for the first time" in a new job) that they be given as much supporting information as possible.  Not everyone will know the wide range of topics someone involved with PCs and the internet for years has covered...  So... how about next time submitting...

"I thought you should know some spam blacklist has added IP xx.xxx.xxx.xx and therefore this should be brought to the attention of your networking/mail server support section.  Please see the link  http:/xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx  and you'll see a report of your mail relay handling mail badly."

There - no emotive language, no SHOUT needed, supplied the link and explanation of what it means and how  the comment/problem could be passed on for fixing and all in a short para.   You may be an IT expert, but getting your point across seems like it could go on a sketch show with cutting backchat from the likes of Ben Elton...

[ and to any mods - sorry if this appears a 'personal attack' but Mr Rowe has given an excellent example of how not to "assist" PlusNet Customer Services in his "exchange" - it's good enough to be a tutorial except there'd be little benefit to users... ]
Oldjim

Posts: 1014

« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2006, 09:32:20 pm »

Just had an email bounced due to spam filter
SMTP error from remote mailer after RCPT TO:**********:
    host relay1.themail.hotchilli.net [62.89.140.201]:
    554 Service unavailable; Client host [212.159.14.213] blocked using dnsbl.sorbs.net; Spam Received
I will raise a ticket
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