Email hearder encoded

Posted on 2014-02-28
Last Modified: 2014-06-10

Sometimes I receive email in my Outlook client that has an encoded header followed be a string of encryption.  The body of the email is readable though.  It looks similar to this below.  I am using Icewarp email server and the sender of this particular email was from Exchange or Office 365, not sure.  Is this caused from the sender?  Or is there something I can do on my end to stop the issue?  It doesn't happen all of the time- its at random from different sending domains.

Question by:W2Market
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LVL 83

Expert Comment

by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 39896852
Did it have "X-Forefront-Antispam-Report-Untrusted: " in front of it?  More info:

What problem is it causing you?

Author Comment

ID: 39900530
It does not have "X-Forefront-Antispam-Report-Untrusted:  in any of it.

It is not causing any problems that I can tell.  As an email provider though, I want to determine if this is happening from the sender or if there is something I can do on my mail server to stop it.  Basically I just want an explanation on what is causing it so that I can relay that to my clients.
LVL 83

Expert Comment

by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 39901069
I wouldn't worry about it then.  Since it is apparently put there by someone else's spam/anti-spam tracking software, you would have to stop accepting email from them to stop it.  Seems like everyone wants to put their 'stamp' in the headers to show that they have checked it.  Often short messages have more characters in the headers than in the text of the message.  Many anti-virus programs put a couple of lines in the headers too.
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Author Comment

ID: 39901097
It is more in depth than that.  I think that it has to do with base64 encoding and the email client not able to decode the message properly.  does anyone have experiance with Exchange that could enlighten me on this?  I read this on Microsoft's site and it sounds ver similar to my issue:
This problem occurs because Exchange Server 2003 sets the PR_INTERNET_CPID property to the UTF-8 character set. The PR_INTERNET_CPID property is a superset for any header field character set and body field character set. When a message uses two different language groups, Outlook tries to display the body of the message in UTF-8. Therefore, the body of the message is garbled.
LVL 83

Expert Comment

by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 39901113
This search will bring up a lot of pages referencing 'SFV:NSPM;SFS:'.

MXToolbox has a lot email related features on their site including this Email Header Analyzer:

Author Comment

ID: 39943117
I spoke with our Firewall/SpamFilter provider and it is possible that it is a bug in the software version.  After it checks for Spam it is not always closing the header properly so the entire message gets corrupt.  I will be upgrading the software soon to see if it will fix it.
LVL 83

Assisted Solution

by:Dave Baldwin
Dave Baldwin earned 500 total points
ID: 39943165
I've seen that problem with some anti-virus programs in the past.  Emails in that case were appearing blank until you looked at the source and could that all the content was there but not displayed because of broken headers or boundaries.

Accepted Solution

W2Market earned 0 total points
ID: 40114938
The Problem ended up being a bug in our firewall software that was corrupting the email header.  After upgrading to the latest version it was fixed!

Author Closing Comment

ID: 40124007
The issue was being caused by our own firewall.

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