Outbound email delivery problems

Customers with e-mail addresses at spiralEmail.com, sierraEmail.com and custom hosted domains are experiencing issues today while sending outbound messages.  Some messages are coming back bounced, and some are not reaching their recipient.

The root of the problem is that a website on our shared hosting server was compromised and sent out high volumes of malicious messages.  This caused our shared hosting server to be placed on multiple e-mail blacklists.  Messages are correctly passing through our server but the reputation issues are causing them to be rejected at the recipient’s end.

We are in the process of re-securing the server so we can initiate the process of blacklist removal. It is difficult to give a specific ETA due to the nature of blacklist removal, but the server security audit that allows us to initiate the removal process is almost complete and typically normal mail delivery resumes within 24 hours.

Edit, 12:30 p.m.: The removal request has been submitted to the primary blacklist causing delivery problems, and they estimate a 4-hour propagation window for the changes.  We are reviewing the server’s mail queue to see what other blacklists need to be addressed.

Edit, 1/19: While the blacklist removal was completed within minutes of the request above, caching issues meant that some servers were using the old blacklist information for several hours (in one case up to 24 hours) after the removal was validated.  We have been monitoring over the past two days and at this point it appears that all e-mail traffic is back to normal.

About Bax

I'm the Technical Support Director for Spiral Internet. You can reach me during business hours at (530) 478-9822, Ext. 1. I'm happy to answer your questions!
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