System Update Security updates to our SMTP email gateway.

Richard

Maintenance Dept
Administrator
Mar 14, 1995
15,522
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Clarence Town
Context:
It is a requirement of hosting on AWS cloud infrastructure to use a dedicated smtp gateway. Consequently these forums use Mailgun as our SMTP gateway. System email generated by these forums originate from the domain mg.ski.com.au with our IP address(s) being those of mailgun servers.

For the last five years since migrating to AWS infrastructure our Mailgun service has been an entry level account costing between only $5~10 US per month and which uses a pool of ip addresses that are used by many other Mailgun accounts.

Recently it has come to my attention that two popular free email platforms are outright rejecting email from one of the ip addresses from the pool. This has resulted in haphazard delivery of email from the system. This has effected the delivery of email such as registration confirmations, lost password requests & watched thread emails.

Upgrade:
Consequently this week I have upgraded our account to a dedicated fixed IP that is clean (ie has no history of running an email service). This service is $80 US per month ($~1000 US per annum) and is a considerable investment, but deemed necessary to ensure the kind of premium forum service we strive for here at ski.com.au.

I have also commenced the process of increasing the security on our email DNS to include DMARC authentication. (We have had both SPF and DKIM authentication implemented since 2016)

The process of upgrading to a dedicated fixed IP + DMARC takes approx 60~90 days as the clean IP address is 'warmed up'

The end result should be consistent and reliable email delivery to all the major (free) email platforms, where our system email is never rejected or filtered off to 'spam' automatically.

@cold wombat @Ken Kato @Sandy @CarveMan @Claude Cat
 
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