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Message 1 of 5

BT's Spam filters are asymmetrical.

This, BT is a statement, not a question.  If you want me to make it a question, treat it as "When will you fix this latest innovation?"

I ignored the first two instances, and am reporting the third.  An obviously MacAfee spam email is let into my inbox by BT's spam filter.  So far, so normal.

The twist is that when I try to FW the phishing message to the people it is spoofed to come from....the BT spam filter kicks into action, saying that what was fine going one way, is not fine going the other.

"Error code 533:  "Sorry your email could not be delivered due to content policy reasons.  Please check your message contents forf URLs, content and subject matter that could be construed as Malware, Spam or Phishing...."

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Message 2 of 5

Re: BT's Spam filters are asymmetrical.

Whilst I totally agree the BT spam filters are pretty dire, you are comparing apples and oranges. Your outgoing mail is a totally different item from your incoming mail. It will have completely different headers to the received mail.

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Message 3 of 5

Re: BT's Spam filters are asymmetrical.

I understand that outgoing mail (whether replied to or forwarded) will have different headers.  of course...or it would be redilivered to me again, wouldn't it?  The point is that it is BTwebmail which adds these headers to a FW message without altering its contents.  And if Webmail adds a header that its own filter decides is spam...that is also a problem wotrthy of fixing.  Though I consider it more likely that the content is the same but detection thresholds/sensitivities differ.

So what point is it you are aiming to  make, as it seems to me it risks distraction from mine?

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Message 4 of 5

Re: BT's Spam filters are asymmetrical.

Headers don't just contain email addresses.

The point I'm making is that the 2 things are independent. You received a mail you shouldn't have, and a mail you sent was rejected.

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Message 5 of 5

Re: BT's Spam filters are asymmetrical.

Are you DETERMINED to count angels dancing on the head of a pin here?

If so, then the direct rebuttal is NO, the two observations I made are NOT independent.

If A is the email I received then BA is the same message when I attempted to forward it (=A, with header B applied to it by BT's webmail).  BA was blocked as spam by the outgoing filter - which is different behaviour from that of the incoming filter which had passed A as not spam.  THIS is the asymmetry I was pointing out as the title of my post and which, had you had the graciousness to acknowledge, would not have led to your initial remark having the diversionary effect I take exception to.

Asymmetry of behaviour is neither what one would expect, not is it desirable.  Why did it happen?  There are only 3 possibilities:

  1. BT's own header B is recognised as spam by BT's outgoing filter.  Seems inconceivable - what would have trained it to do this?  Besides, the same behaviour would block all or most other forwarded emails.
  2. A (which is common to both incoming and outgoing messages - and is that which makes the two events NOT independent of each other) is passed by the incoming filter and failed by the outgoing filter.  This is the faulty behaviour I am drawing attention to.
  3. By a 'black-box' alchemy not open to reasoned examination any more than is the behaviour of any neural network, the COMBINATION of B+A is recognised as spam when neither of its components are.  Certainly a conceivable possibility, but because of the impossibility of examining it, it can neither be asserted to be true nor to be false.  But the non-utility of this outcome (in helping BT in its aim to detect more true spam) gives no Darwinian reason to select for it.

All of which leaves 2. as the likeliest explanation.

THIS: is what I was pointing out in my OP; is something that IS in BT's domain to fix; is desirable that BT fix it; and is a useful purpose distracted from by your unhelpful intervention.

Why am I taking exception to your approach?  Because this is not the first time I have observed you to, without acknowledging the merit of an OP, make a diversionary assertion serving no purpose save to draw attention to your expertise.  My psychologist wife might say that behind such patterns of behaviour lie sad and needy inadequacy, rooted in long-ago rejection.  Fragile self-worth is toxic for others exposed to it.

My aim is different:  it is to prod BT (by embarrassment if necessary) to fix some of the many failings with BT Webmail.  If you wish to respond to this, may I suggest you re-examine your original remark and see if you can find something to say which is better designed to to stir BT into productive action.  What OTHER worthwhile purpose is served by frequent lurking in this Forum?

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