I have recently been receiving spam that has been listed as my own email address. I remember doing a few telenet emails back in school and know there are some ways to send looking like they are coming from a different place but wanted to ask others opinions on this. The server is a Zimbra 6.06 server running on Debian lenny. Does anyone think there is possibly something wrong with the setup here or is this just some spoofing going on? I can see that the email is coming from outside of the network of course.

Return-Path: [email protected]
Received: from zimbra.example.com (LHLO zimbra.example.com) ( by
 zimbra.example.com with LMTP; Tue, 10 May 2011 06:00:40 -0500 (CDT)
Received: from localhost (localhost [])
    by zimbra.example.com (Postfix) with ESMTP id D2B9759FC5
    for <[email protected]>; Tue, 10 May 2011 06:00:40 -0500 (CDT)
X-Virus-Scanned: amavisd-new at zimbra.example.com
X-Spam-Flag: YES
X-Spam-Score: 8.593
X-Spam-Level: ********
X-Spam-Status: Yes, score=8.593 tagged_above=-10 required=6.6
    tests=[BAYES_99=3.5, RCVD_IN_BL_SPAMCOP_NET=1.96, RCVD_IN_XBL=3.033,
    RDNS_NONE=0.1] autolearn=no
Received: from zimbra.example.com ([])
    by localhost (zimbra.example.com []) (amavisd-new, port 10024)
    with ESMTP id 5Be4Ob1KSuhu for <[email protected]>;
    Tue, 10 May 2011 06:00:39 -0500 (CDT)
Received: from [] (unknown [])
    by zimbra.example.com (Postfix) with ESMTP id 44CBC59D4F
    for <[email protected]>; Tue, 10 May 2011 06:00:39 -0500 (CDT)
Received: from
    by example.com with esmtpa (Exim 4.69)
    (envelope-from )
    id 1MMKY8-2034hf-28
  • I use Postini as my anti-spam gateway and have rules to drop any mail received from mydomains.com as anything internal would never see the outside.
    – gravyface
    May 10, 2011 at 13:16

2 Answers 2


Having a properly configured SPF record can alleviate a little bit of that pain.

It will prevent someone from sending email claiming it is from your domain.

  • 1
    Well, it will if in addition to publishing a well-configured SPF record you also configure your MTA to check SPF records on incoming email. But I agree, this is well-worth doing.
    – MadHatter
    May 10, 2011 at 13:15
  • I followed the instructions here for SPF, pyzor, and razor and am still seeing some spoofing going on. I do not see anything indicating that my MTA should check the SFP records. Anyone know how to force that on zimbra? wiki.zimbra.com/…
    – grantk
    May 10, 2011 at 17:25

You can write anything in the "From" header field of an email. Try it with standard mail command on any Linux box:

$ mail -a "From: [email protected]" -s "Richard Stallman here!" <your_email_address>
  • heh, I did not know he knew my email address! I was just curios as to whether or not there was anything I was possibly doing wrong on the server side. But I assume not, although I am curious how they got the emails, spoofed an awful lot of them, as well as some alias used internally mostly, but if this one was answered that would probably be a very rich man then.
    – grantk
    May 10, 2011 at 13:12
  • They don't need to know your email address. Normally they will try ten of thousands of possible combinations (or maybe much more), most of which will not get delivered, but a handful of them will be valid addresses and so do get delivered. Unless you have a catchall address, you must likely don't know anything about all the others.
    – sgmoore
    May 10, 2011 at 13:35

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .