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Message 1 of 14

Email spam filter is garbage

I am sure I switched off my spam filter some years ago.

A few weeks ago an acqaintance accused me of not replying to emails. I normally use Outlook, but logged on to webmail to check. I found 199 emails in my spam folder. Some of them were genuine spam, some were ordinary boring emails from friends and organisations, and one in particular was from BT telling me my latest bill was available for viewing.

I could not find any way to switch off the spam filter.

I phoned BT to find out what was going on. I was told I could not turn it off. I was told I could set up a rule to override it, so I set up one where if 'to' contains my name then move it to inbox.

This seemed to work for a few weeks, but some were still going missing. Further investigation showed I needed to change my rule to recognise my name in 'to or CC', which seems to work.

This whole affair annoyed me so much that I raised a complaint with BT.

I eventually got a phone call from this chap who told me it was all my fault. My spam filters were the culprit. When I couldn't find any spam filters he said he meant rules. I told him what was in the only rule I had, and he then told me I  could only use webmail for access ‐ Outlook wasn't supported. I asked him why I could no longer switch off spam filers he said it was to protect their customers.

I have checked the BT web site and it actually gives advice on how to use Outlook to access mail.

How can they get away with this. Surely other people are losing emails.

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Message 2 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

You can not turn off the spam filters with BTMail.

When the BT Customer Service rep said that Outlook was not supported he was correct.

What this means is that you can use Outlook or any other email client/app that you wish. BT supply the settings that you require to do that but BT do not support it in as much as if anything goes wrong while you are using an email client BT can not offer assistance to fix it. There are far to many email clients/apps over which BT have no control to be able to do this.

If you choose to use the BTMail app you will be given assistance if something goes wrong.

BT will also give assistance if there is a problem with your BTMail when using it via webmail in a browser.

You should set your Outlook email client up as an IMAP account if it is not already and set it to access your Spam folder and you will be able to check for any emails that get placed into it.

Message 3 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

An email entering the BT email system is categorised by the spam filters into one of three categories and dealt with as below.

1. Definitely not spam--- Mail delivered to account Inbox.

2. Indeterminate ------ Mail delivered to account Spam folder for user determination.

3.Definitely spam-------- Mail deleted on server and not delivered to your account at all.

There is no direct way to change any of this. You can only influence the spam filters by marking spam mail incorrectly delivered to your Inbox as 'Spam' and false positives delivered to your Spam folder as 'Not Spam' in your account settings.


Message 4 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

It sounds like you work for BT, by the way you are defending them

I know you can no longer turn the spam filter off. That is one of my complaints. I was told they removed the option to 'protect customers', which is bizarre, as it does the reverse.

I have never seen anything on the web site that says I can only use webmail to access emails. They provide detailed help on how to set up mail clients, and in particular there is a page dedicated to Outlook.

I have been using POP3 for many years, and have no intention of uploading 30,000 plus emails to an IMAP account.

Even if I was using it via webmail, it does not get round the fact that it seems totally random when identifying emails as spam. No-one has offered me any explanation as to why an email from BT telling me my latest BT bill was available for viewing was spam.

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Message 5 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

Please show me where in my description of how the spam filtering works have I defended it.

It was a pure and simple explanation of how it operates.

BT spam filtering is notoriously flaky lurching from one extreme to the other, but that doesn't change the basic principles of its operation.


Message 6 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

Like the other reply to my post it sound like you work for BT.

Why else would you defend such an appalling system?

I did not know that it deleted things that it decided were definitely spam. I assumed it was all put in the spam folder. I wonder how many of my emails have just been deleted with no notification to me at all. It is totally incapable of recognising spam, so I cannot trust it. They will not tell me why an email from BT telling me my latest BT bill was available for viewing was spam.

I want to switch off spam filtering, like I used to do.

It is so bad that if I worked for BT I would be embarrassed.

I will have to go elsewhere.



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Message 7 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

Do you have difficulty with comprehension? Where have I defended it.

I do not work for BT

Message 8 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

If your rant about defending BT is directed at me I will first of say that I do not not nor have I ever worked for BT.

I am also not defending BT in any way shape or form. What I have posted is information that you would appear to be ignorant of and either have not read correctly or can not understand.

No where did I say that you could not use an email client or that BT said you had to use webmail.

There are other things in your replies that are inaccurate but I see little point in pointing them out to you as it is apparent that you are not getting the answers that you want so there is little point in doing so.

Message 9 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

I think you need to look up the definition of 'rant'.

Agreed, I am not getting the replies I expected.

I was expecting that other people were suffering missing email and would confirm my experience.

I retract my suggestion of defending BT, but you certainly seem to accept their appalling software without criticism.

I am paying BT a lot of money for landline, broadband, mobile phone and email. When I complain I expect them to jump, not accuse me of causing all the problems.

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Message 10 of 14

Re: Email spam filter is garbage

@Melluish wrote:


 but you certainly seem to accept their appalling software without criticism.


Really? I suggest your read some of my past posts on the subject.

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