v0.24 Aliases - Regular | Catch-All | Domain Alias and SPAM combat



I have managed to semi-successfully transfer one of my domains running postfix/dovecote to MIAB VPS, but have question about aliases.

I have been manually editing /etc/postfix/virtual in order to get the following setup on my old mail server.

I wanted to combat spam, or know who sold or misused my email address so in order to do that I have requested each user to create unique e-mail address alias if giving away to organizations, banks etc. it would start with “number DOT domain where they giving the e-mail address DOT yearmonthandday (to make it unique) AT my DOT domain”.

So I would have 1.mailinabox.email.20170906@my.domain and I would have it forwarded to my myname@my.domain in /etc/postfix/virtual

What I am looking is there a way to automate this in MIAB so I do not need to add in aliases but lets say all email that will start with number one “1.somethinghere@my.domain” would automatically go to me and e-mails starting with number two “2.somethinghere@my.domain” go to my son etc.?


Have you tried using the + sign in your email addresses, that is how I combat this. So compose your email like myname+anything@mydomain.com. This will always go to the inbox of myname@mydomain.com and you can use rules in your mailclient or server to move it to any folder you woud like to.


This is my set up and it does not work.

3.+@domain.name -> tiffany@domain.name
2.+@domain.name -> ivanka@domain.name

Catch all to make sure that we do not miss on any valid e-mails
@domain.name -> donald@domain.name

abuse@domain.name -> donald@box.my.name
admin@domain.name -> donald@box.my.name
postmaster@domain.name -> donald@box.my.name

If I e-mail 3.snap.pack@domain.name email would not get deliver to tiffany@domain.name, but catch all donald@domain.name,

same for 2.millennials @domain.name email would not get deliver to ivanka@domain.name, but instead catch all donald@domain.name

Am I doing something wrong?


Your setup of
3.+@domain.name -> tiffany@domain.name
2.+@domain.name -> ivanka@domain.name
Wont work, if you want something like this to work you need to do it like:
tiffany+3@domain.name -> tiffany@domain.name
ivanka +2@domain.name -> ivanka@domain.name

It should always start with an existing username. Otherwise you’ll be stuck with aliases.


Just tried it, and it is not working.

created Regular Alias tiffany+3@domain.name
Forwards To tiffany@domain.name
Permitted Senders: Any mail user listed in the Fowards To box can send mail claiming to be from the alias address.

sent email to 3.test@domain.name and it has been delivered to donald@domain.name instead of tiffany@domain.name

If I delete Catch-All rule, and try send the e-mail to 3.test@domain.name I get:
550 5.1.1 3.test@domain.name: Recipient address rejected: User unknown in virtual mailbox table


If you use tiffany+3@domain.name you don’t need to create an alias. It will automatically deliver to tiffany@domain.name.

The plus sign is not for aliases, it just added functionality in the delivery mechanism in postfix to be able to route/filter incoming email in subfolders.


Hi Richard5,

I see, this is not going to work for me :frowning:

The spammers can not be underestimated :slight_smile:

So there would be nothing easier for them then remove the “+3” from the e-mail “tiffany+3@domain.name” and instead of that email going to specific folder it would get delivered to Inbox and I would not be able to track who sold/abused that unique e-mail alias “3.snap.pack@domain.name” address that we all create for every website that wants e-mail registration …


3 - is unique number that would identify specific user (1 for donald, 2 for ivanka, 3 for tiffany etc. for eg.)
snap.pack - would be the name of the server that e-mail has been used to register with
20170101 - Is the date that it has been registered with the website

That way, this alias would be unique and easily traceable to whom abused that specific address.

I have listened to program on BBC Radio 4 while ago and someone there was talking about this approach (and making money back from companies that send spam to him), he used same approach, but without the unique date and the spamming company argued that the email was not unique etc. … so when he start making the aliases unique spam went down to 0 and same has worked for me in the past when running the mail and manually adding aliases to /etc/postfix/virtual on server set up from article over here

So it looks like there is not way to get emails starting with “prefix number dot something dot dateandtime at domain.name” be delivered to predefined user without having to add them manually via Mail -> Aliases menu :frowning:


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