Managing suspended tickets and spam Follow

all plans

Email sent to Zendesk Support can be suspended or rejected. Suspended email is not necessarily spam. This article explains the other reasons tickets can be suspended and what to do about them.

Topics covered in this article:

What are suspended tickets?

When an end-user submits a support request by email, in most cases the email becomes a new ticket or adds a comment to an existing ticket. In certain cases though, the email is suspended. Suspending an email means putting it aside for further review. It's not necessarily spam. It's just not a ticket in Zendesk Support yet. It remains in limbo until somebody reviews it and decides whether to accept or reject it. If nobody reviews it, the email is deleted after 14 days.

Suspended emails are displayed in a system-generated view. Click the Views () icon in the sidebar and then click the Suspended Tickets view.

An email can be suspended for several reasons, some for intentional policy reasons. A common reason is that the email is from an unregistered user when you require users to register. Example:

For more information, see What causes tickets to be suspended? below.

We recommend implementing a process for reviewing suspended emails. See Guidelines for reviewing suspended tickets below.

Instead of being suspended, an email can be rejected outright. A rejected email is not kept for further review and it can't be recovered. Email is rejected for the following two reasons:
  • The email is spam. If the email is rated as having a 99% or better chance of being spam, it's rejected. If the rating is less than a 99%, the email is suspended to give you a chance to confirm that it's really spam.
  • You blacklisted the email address or domain. See Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to your Zendesk.

What causes emails to be suspended?

Emails are suspended for two basic reasons:

  • the sender is not allowed to create or update a ticket
  • the sender is not a person

The sender is not allowed to create or update tickets

An email can be suspended if you require users to register before submitting their first ticket, or if your instance of Zendesk Support is closed or restricted that limits who can submit tickets.

  • Open e requires users to register, anybody can submit tickets as long as they register first. After submitting a first ticket, the ticket is suspended and a welcome email is sent to the new user requiring them to register before the ticket can be submitted. After the user verifies their email address and creates a password, the ticket is unsuspended.
  • Closed permits designated users can create or update tickets. An administrator designates who can submit tickets. If an unknown person tries to submit a ticket, the email is suspended.
  • Restricted permits only users with email addresses in certain domains can register and submit tickets. Emails in other domains are either suspended or completely rejected, depending on your setup.

A sender can also be prevented from updating a ticket if the email token identifying the ticket is stripped from the reply email. For more information, see Understanding the email token in the agent's guide.

The sender is not a person

Emails are suspended if Zendesk Support detects they're not from real users. Examples:

  • suspected spam
  • automated response emails
  • emails from system users such as mail-daemon@ or postmaster@
  • emails with a 'no-reply' address

See Cause of suspension descriptions below for more information.

Guidelines for reviewing suspended tickets

Review your queue of suspended tickets on a regular basis. Follow review guidelines like the ones suggested below. The guidelines vary depending on how your instance of Zendesk Support is set up.

You can review suspended emails one-by-one or in bulk. The choice depends on your policy and the volume of suspended emails to be recovered or deleted. When reviewing emails in bulk, recovering them creates a batch of tickets. When reviewing emails one by one, you have the option of recovering each email automatically or manually. The automatic recovery option creates the ticket immediately. The manual recovery option lets you edit the ticket properties before it's created. For step-by-step instructions, see Viewing, recovering, and deleting suspended tickets in the agent's guide.

Review guidelines for an open Zendesk Support instance

Anybody can submit tickets when using open support. You may or may not require them to register first. If they have to register, the first ticket is suspended while a welcome email is sent to the new user requiring them to register before the ticket can be submitted.

Guidelines if you don't require users to register

  1. Recover emails that should be tickets. In particular, look for the following cases:
    • ticket notification replies with the email token stripped out (cause of suspension in the Suspended Tickets view: "User does not have authority to update the ticket")
    • spam emails that aren't spam (cause of suspension: "Detected as spam")
  2. Bulk delete any remaining emails.

Guidelines if you require users to register

  1. Recover tickets from users who haven't registered yet. Recovering the ticket also registers the user. To identify the emails, look for the following cause of suspension in the Suspended Tickets view: "User must sign up to submit email, user notified." Note that the user's email remains unverified until the user responds to the welcome email sent to them.
  2. Recover other emails that should be tickets. In particular, look for the following cases:
    • tickets that registered users submitted through the web form while logged out (cause of suspension: "Submitted by registered user while logged out")
    • ticket notification replies by registered users from unverified addresses (cause of suspension: "Submitted by unverified user")
    • ticket notification replies by registered users with the email token stripped out (cause of suspension: "Permission denied due to unauthenticated email update")
    • spam emails that aren't spam (cause of suspension: "Detected as spam")
  3. Bulk delete any remaining emails.

Review guidelines for a closed or restricted Zendesk Support instance

Only designated persons can submit tickets directly in closed or restricted support. You may have a suspended ticket workflow in place to let anonymous users submit tickets indirectly. When a support request from an anonymous user is received and suspended, an agent reviews the email and either recovers or deletes it.

Guidelines

  1. If you accept tickets from anonymous users, review and recover them one by one, either manually or automatically. To identify them, look for the following causes of suspension in the Suspended Tickets view: "Permission denied for unknown email submitter" for a closed or "Sender domain not in the whitelist" for a restricted.
  2. If you are requiring approved users to register, recover tickets from approved users who haven't registered yet. Recovering the ticket also registers the user. To identify the emails, look for the following cause of suspension: "User must sign up to submit email, user notified." Note that the user's email remains unverified until the user responds to the welcome email sent to them.
  3. Recover other emails that should be tickets. In particular, look for the following cases:
    • tickets that registered users submitted through the web form while logged out (cause of suspension: "Submitted by registered user while logged out")
    • ticket notification replies by registered users from unverified addresses (cause of suspension: "Submitted by unverified user")
    • ticket notification replies by registered users with the email token stripped out (cause of suspension: "Permission denied due to unauthenticated email update")
    • spam emails that aren't spam (cause of suspension: "Detected as spam")
  4. Bulk delete the remaining emails.

Reducing suspended spam

Zendesk uses spam detection software to rate incoming email. If the email is rated as having a 99% or greater chance of being spam, it's rejected and you never see it. If it's rated as having less than a 99% chance of being spam, the email is added to your suspended tickets to give you a chance to confirm that it's really spam.

If you find that you're receiving more spam emails than you'd like in your suspended tickets queue, you can use the blacklist to reject specific email addresses and domains. See Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to your Zendesk.

Note: The option to blacklist email is not available when administrators designate who can submit tickets.

Using the whitelist to prevent suspensions

Using the whitelist only prevents one cause of suspension ("Sender domain not on whitelist") but not the others. The whitelist is used in conjunction with the blacklist to restrict access. Emails submitted by end-users on the blacklist are suspended or rejected. The whitelist specifies who is exempt from the blacklist rules, not from the email suspension rules.

For example, an email from a white-listed user can still be suspended because the user hasn't registered yet (cause of suspension: "User must sign up to submit email, user notified").

For more information, see Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to your Zendesk.

Setting up suspended ticket notifications

In addition to the Suspended Tickets view, you can set up a suspended tickets notification email that is sent to specific email addresses.

In the Suspended Ticket Notifications section of the Tickets settings page, you can select the frequency and enter the email addresses that you want the notifications to be sent to.

To set up suspended ticket notifications

  1. Click the Admin icon () in the sidebar, then select Tickets.
  2. In the Suspended Ticket Notifications section you can select the frequency and enter the email addresses that you want the notifications to be sent to.
  3. Enter the email addresses you want the notifications sent to.
  4. Click Save tab.

If you later want to cancel these notifications, select Never.

You'll only receive the notification email if there are tickets in the suspended tickets queue.

Cause of suspension descriptions

The Suspended Tickets view displays messages describing the cause of suspension for each suspended email.

The following table lists the possible descriptions in the view and what each one means.

Cause of suspension Description Solution
Automatic email processing failed Although rare, you might see this if a system-wide email processing error occurred. Contact our customer service team for further assistance with this cause of suspension.
Automated response mail This is used when the email header indicates that the message is an auto-generated email response. You will need to modify your email client, so the message is no longer auto-generated. Contact your email provider for details on adjusting your email header.
Automated response mail, delivery failed This indicates that an outgoing email notification was not delivered to its recipient. The delivery failure email response is suspended so that a ticket is not created. You will need to modify your email client settings, such as email headers. Contact your email provider for details on adjusting your email settings. Emails with the following headers will be suspended by Zendesk Support:

Common

  • X-Twitteremailtype
  • X-Mailing-Software
  • Precedence
  • X-Autoreply
  • X-Autorespond
  • X-Autoresponder
  • X-Auto-Response-Suppress
  • X-Tender

Uncommon

  • RT-Ticket
  • Kayako|MailChimp|Benchmail Agent|Clang|Autoresponder
  • Auto-Submitted
  • cmWinServer
  • X-EviteMessageID
  • Delivered-To
  • Autoresponder
  • X-NetSuite

You can whitelist the uncommon headers listed above to prevent tickets from being suspended.

If you have continue to encounter problems, please contact support@zendesk.com with the ticket ID.

Automated response mail, out of office Out of office and vacation auto-generated response emails are suspended. You will need to remove the 'vacation', 'Out of Office', 'Auto-reply', or any similar terminology from the email header. Contact your email provider for details on adjusting email settings.
Detected as mail loop If you receive a large number of emails from a single sender in a short period of time, those emails are suspended and the sender's address is blacklisted for one hour. This also happens to tickets that are sent from an address equal to your default Reply To address. You will need to ensure that the end-user's email address is whitelisted. If the email address sends a large number of emails, it might be useful to add it as a support address (see Adding support addresses for users to submit tickets).
Detected as spam The email has been flagged as spam with a probability lower than 99%. If the probability is 99%, the email is rejected. The email might also have been flagged as spam because it is from a suspended user. You will need to check if the user is suspended and whitelist the email address (see Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to Zendesk Support).
Detected email as being from a system user Email generated by a mail server (for example, messages sent from addresses beginning with mail-daemon@ and postmaster@) are suspended because it is assumed that they are not intended to be support requests. Mail from these addresses will need to be sent from or redirected through valid email addresses.
Email for "noreply" address The email address is a "no reply" email address, meaning that it is not intended to receive email. 'No reply' addresses can be added to your whitelist to prevent automatic suspension (see Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to Zendesk Support).
Email is from a blacklisted sender or domain The email came from an address or domain that you've blacklisted. See Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to Zendesk Support. If you need to accept the emails, you can remove the domain address from the blacklist (see Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to Zendesk Support).
End user only allowed to update their own tickets This indicates that an email response (ticket update) was received from a user (email address) that is different from the original submitter's email address. This might happen if the submitter forwarded the email to a different email account and then attempted to reply back to your Zendesk. Multiple email addresses per user are supported but they must be added to the user's profile. There are three methods for resolving this:
  • Add the user as a cc on a ticket.
  • Add the user as the requester of the ticket.
  • Create a new ticket with the user as the requester.
Email is too large The email sent by the end-user exceeds the maximum size limit and was rejected by the server. The user can try resending the email at a smaller size.
Permission denied due to unauthenticated email update This indicates that the email header doesn't contain the email token identifying the ticket. This can happen if an email client strips out email header information. See Understanding the email token. This issue occurs when the Zendesk Support details from the email header are removed while the email is being processed. Contact your email provider for assistance on adjusting email settings.
Permission denied for unknown email submitter When you require your users to register and create an account, email received from unregistered (unknown) users is suspended. The user will need to register for access(see Permitting only users with approved email addresses to submit tickets (restricted)).
Received from support address The email was sent by (not forwarded from) one of your support addresses. For information about support addresses, see Adding support addresses for users to submit support requests. The email was received from one of your listed support addresses and is causing a mail loop. You will need to change the FROM address on the email, or the outgoing form, to something other than the support address.
Sender domain not on whitelist When your account is configured to only allow emails from a given set of domains (using the whitelist), this indicates that the sender's email address or domain is not within that set. You will need to whitelist the email domain or address (see Using the whitelist and blacklist to control access to Zendesk Support).
Submitted by unverified user This indicates that the user is known, but has not yet verified their email address. The end user must verify their email address with the verification email sent to them. An agent or admin can also manually verify the email on the user's profile (see Verifying a user's email).
User must sign up to submit email, user notified This is used when an account requires end-users to register and therefore verify their email address before submitting tickets. Once their email address/user account is verified, they can submit tickets. The user needs to register for access (Permitting only users with approved email addresses to submit tickets).
Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

  • 0

    Hi Support team,

    I've read through a few of the comments and only saw one with my issue, but I didn't see a response for it.

    The issue I'm having is that one of our email addresses is setup as a support address in Zendesk. We've been experimenting with certain rules for that mailbox so that none of the emails sent to that address actually stay in the inbox. I ended up setting up a redirect rule to go straight to our Zendesk, but now quite a few of the tickets that get created are marked as spam with the "Received from a support address" message. Is there a way to combat this issue? I understand that Zendesk is setup to allow forwards to go through, but if a message is redirected and it shows as coming from the support address it gets blocked, which is not what we want happening.

  • 0

    Hey, Brandon -

    If you've set up a true redirect, we should be able to recognize the incoming email as having been forwarded, and treat the original sender as the requester. If you sent an email directly from your support email to Zendesk, it will be suspended. This is in order to avoid mail loop problems, and because Zendesk sends on behalf of your support email address. We are at this time unable to support email being sent from your support address to Zendesk for any reason.

    If you think your redirect might not be working as expected, we should file a ticket.

  • 0

    we want a way to limit viewing and handling suspended tickets by permissions. we dont' want all agents doing this...

  • 0
    In Infusionsoft I have a campaign that sends an email to our Zendesk to notify support that a customer license needs upgrading. Zendesk is suspending the emails as 'Automated response mail'. How can I get Zendesk to accept Infusionsoft emails?
  • 0
    Hi Zac, I believe if you add the domain the notification emails are coming from to the domain list of your organization it will allow the emails through.
  • 0
    Hi Zac! Zendesk is set up to automatically suspend any ticket that it detects is coming from something that's not a human, which is why you're having this problem. Whitelisting the email domain only works for a specific type of suspension reason, so I'm afraid that's not going to take care of the issue for you. I'd recommend setting up the suspended ticket notifications as detailed in this article so you can manually retrieve those tickets as they arrive. Alternately, you could see about using the API to pull those notifications into your Zendesk, which would bypass the email channel completely. You can find more info on using our API here: https://developer.zendesk.com/rest_api Hope that helps!
  • 0

    Hi all, do suspended tickets get counted in the "New Tickets" stat? 

     

  • 0

    @eva nope - only when recovered.

  • 0

    Phew, thanks @Andrew, this is exactly how I was hoping it would work. 

  • 0

    Hi, is there a way so that a certain domain(@xxxxx.net) can be received without going to Suspended tickets(via Detected as spam) or require anonymous user to register? We'd like to receive all tickets from these domains without registering users but whitelist seems to work for only those who registered.

  • 0

    Hi Yeh!  Great question. As it turns out, there currently isn't an option to whitelist domains of anonymous users. Since the whitelist is only available when requiring users to register, the only option would be to recover those suspended tickets that are being marked as spam. 

  • 0

    Hi - Can anyone tell me what the rate limits are on the cause: Email loop?

  • 0

    Hi Carsten, We're very sorry, our rate limits are not public facing information. They can change under certain conditions, particularly once the threshold has been breached, which makes it very difficult to just provide a numeric answer that will always be true. If you are having a specific problem then it would be very helpful if you would create a ticket with us at support@zendesk.com. We'd be happy to take a closer look. 

  • 0

    Hi Can you please advise, if i add the no-reply email addresses into whitelist, does zendesk still separates these emails as suspended? Because i do want to receive some specific no-reply emails into my zendesk account as a ticket?

Please sign in to leave a comment.

Powered by Zendesk