Iron Horse E-Mail Spam Blocking Policy

Iron Horse uses a variety of spam blocking mechanisms. Over 90% of the mail we receive is spam. We want good mail to get through, but we cannot afford our client e mails to get buried in garbage. [Iron Horse sells, configures, and troubleshoots anti-spam systems. Ask us how we can keep your mail from being blocked and how to set up effective spam blocking that will not block mail you want to see.]

As all good mail handlers (should) do, we generate an informative error message when we block mail. Sometimes these messages are not shown to the sender of the mail because their e mail server (Exchange is a big culprit) or their administrator edits out our message. If your e mail got rejected here at Iron Horse, we will be happy to tell your e mail administrator why. [If you have problems sending or receiving e mail on your servers, we can fix those problems as well.

Unlike most other e mail destinations, Iron Horse allows you to send to an address that is largely unblocked if your mail has to go through right away and it is blocked for some reason. Send your e mail message to and it should come through unless you are trying to attach a virus or executable program, which we will still block. Yes, we see LOTS of spam on at that address, but those spammers are idiot robots. It is pretty easy for a human to pick out your legitimate e mail. Then call us to tell us of your difficulty sending to us and that we have a message you want us to see.

We will white list or exempt specific IP ranges and senders so we are sure not to block that mail. If you need this service, please ask. We can only fix your delivery problems here for free. If you have a problem with your mail not getting through, we can still help, but you will have to hire us!

What mail do we block or delay?

We use various methods to ensure mail is coming from a legitimate source. If we block or delay your mail, it is likely many others will, too.

Iron Horse ensures its authoritative DNS configuration is correct. Good forward and reverse DNS helps receiving e mail servers recognize Iron Horse mail as being legitimate. We also lock down our firewall, DNS and e mail servers so to make it difficult for an attacker to gain control of and use our systems to send spam to others. The information we put in DNS also keeps someone else from claiming mail came from Iron Horse when we did not send it. If you publish bad DNS information or fail to properly secure your DNS, firewall, or mail servers, you will likely end up seeing your mail blocked by anyone employing anti-spam techniques, including Iron Horse.

Greylisting is used at Iron Horse to curb denial of service, directory harvesting, and spam attacks. Greylisting works like this: If someone sends an e mail for the first time to someone at Iron Horse, the server will report back that it is too busy to accept their mail. Legitimate e mail servers will try again. Spammers will not. If you really must get that message through and think you are being affected by greylisting, try sending the same message again after waiting one minute.

If the information sent to our server by the sending server does not check out, we reject the mail.

We check whether the address sending the mail is actually a mail server and that the mail server is set up like it is supposed to be. The mail server must have both a valid name and address, for example. If not, we will block the mail.

If you try to send us what we view as a malicious link in your e mail, we will block the mail.

If you try to send us a file we think might be dangerous, we will block it. If it needs to get through, talk to us!

Tony Stirk

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