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Amazon SES suspension after human investigation
  • Vote Up0Vote Down BrittMalkaBrittMalka
    Posts: 22Sendy user

    Hi,

    I spend the most of last Tuesday trying to figure out how to set the DNS timer (or something like that) because I suddenly was disconnected from Amazon SES, only to find out later that day that the problem might be with Amazon. When I tried to login, I was told that I didn't have an account there.

    So I created a ticket, and got an answer today. This is what they wrote:

    =============================================

    Dear Britt,

    Thank you for contacting Amazon Simple Email Service (Amazon SES) in regards to your Amazon SES Account. I have verified at this time your Amazon SES sending privileges have been suspended. This suspension is related to a human investigation of your sending. I have included the suspension notice below. You may appeal this suspension to ses-enforcement@amazon.com. In your appeal, please explain in detail either why you believe the suspension itself was an error, or details as to changes you have made to ensure that the same issue does not occur again.

    Suspension notice:

    Dear Amazon Simple Email Service Customer,

    Your account has been suspended, effective immediately.

    This immediate suspension occurred because we have conducted a human investigation of your Amazon SES sending, and the results of our investigation lead us to strongly believe that you are sending mail that is not compliant with the Amazon Web Services Acceptable Use Policy (http://aws.amazon.com/aup/).

    Amazon SES is designed for messages that have been specifically requested by the recipient. The Acceptable Use Policy requires that "You will not distribute, publish, send, or facilitate the sending of unsolicited mass e-mail or other messages, promotions, advertising, or solicitations (like "spam"), including commercial advertising and informational announcements." Amazon SES investigates cases in which messages appear to violate the Acceptable Use Policy or are not desired by the recipient, whether due to being unsolicited or for any other reason.

    We cannot reveal our anti-abuse techniques and information sources, so we recommend that you reexamine your sending by considering the following: Are all the messages that you send specifically requested by the recipient and do they comply with the Acceptable Use Policy? Have you acquired email addresses in any way other than a customer specifically interacting with your site and requesting emails from it? Do the services you advertise comply with the Acceptable Use Policy as well?

    We also recommend that you read the Amazon SES Best Practices guide: http://media.amazonwebservices.com/AWS_Amazon_SES_Best_Practices.pdf.

    This suspension notice supersedes any previous probation warnings you may have received. If you wish to appeal this suspension, please respond to this email with details of how you will change your sending in order to avoid this problem or why you think this notice may be incorrect.

    Beth R.

    Amazon Web Services

    All my subscribers have gone through a double opt in on AWeber, before I imported them in Sendy. I am definitely NOT sending out spam.

    What to do? I can appeal, they say, but what if this happens again? I don't trust them after this.

  • 3 Comments
  • Vote Up0Vote Down BenBen
    Posts: 3,484Sendy support

    Hi Britt,

    Sorry to hear that. Looks like Amazon did a periodic human investigation to weed out spammers. Firstly, it's worth noting the reason for doing that is for them to uphold their reputation with ISPs and maintain their deliverability rates for the benefit of all users using Amazon SES.

    Now, I have some questions, I need you to be completely honest, otherwise this will go nowhere:

    1. What is your usual bounce and complaint rates that triggered them to do an investigation on you?
    2. How many subscribers do you usually send to?
    3. Can you provide the URL of pages where these subscribers opt-in to receive your newsletters?
    4. What kind of newsletters are you sending (eg. marketing, educational etc)?
    5. Can you provide the web version link of your 3 recent newsletters? Go to campaign report, right click on the eye icon beside the campaign title and copy the link

    Amazon intentionally does not provide you with their reasons for suspending your account. They want you to appeal to them and tell them what you think you did wrong and let them know that you won't do this again, after which they will most certainly reinstate your account.

    I strongly suggest reading the AWS Acceptable Use Policy they provided you. One of your sites, Money Making Ideas seem to fall under their "No Illegal, Harmful, or Offensive Use or Content".

    Harmful or Fraudulent Activities. Activities that may be harmful to others, our operations or reputation, including offering or disseminating fraudulent goods, services, schemes, or promotions (e.g., make-money-fast schemes, ponzi and pyramid schemes, phishing, or pharming), or engaging in other deceptive practices.

    Amazon may have suspended you because you may have sent newsletters that fall under this category, leading your SES account to become suspended. A lot of "make-money" sites or blogs are usually scammers, spammers or both but I'm sure you are not.

    Looking forward to your answers to my 5 questions above. Thanks.

    Best regards,
    Ben

  • Vote Up0Vote Down BrittMalkaBrittMalka
    Posts: 22Sendy user

    Hi Ben,

    Yes, money-making online is my main business, and yes, there's a lot of scam there. I'm not among them, but if Amazon doesn't know the difference, then they are just as idiotic and useless as Google AdWords.

    Okay, to answer your questions:

    1. Usual bounce rate: 0% - Usual complaint rate: 0% (I had 2 persons complain right after I moved to Sendy two weeks ago, and none after.)

    2. I normally send to around 1300 subscribers - and I do so daily.

    3. They've subscribed through different URL's but here's one: http://getmoneymakingideas.com/free.html - some others are from product they've bought. They all went through a double opt-in.

    4. The mails are tips for online marketers and promotions for products I've tried and tested.

    5. http://voopti.com/w/f http://voopti.com/w/e http://voopti.com/w/d

    - and then during a webinar held by another person, somebody asked for a link from me and the webinar host told me to send it per mail, which I did here: http://voopti.com/w/g - oh, I just noticed now that somebody marked this as spam.

    Is there an alternative to Amazon SES? Because since money-making online is my main business and they believe we're all spammers, then I don't see how I can use them, even if they should reinstate my account.

  • Vote Up0Vote Down BenBen
    Posts: 3,484Sendy support

    Hey Britt,

    I suggest replying to Amazon SES to appeal and say that you suspect you are being suspended due to your email's content being about "making money". Say that you understand this somewhat falls under the "Harmful or Fraudulent Activities" category in the Acceptable Use Policy. Let them know that teaching people how to make money online is your main business and you have no intention to cause harm nor is it a fraudulent activity. Tell them you are aware of "get rich quick" and "make money fast" schemes and how they are mostly fraudulent but that is not what your business is about.

    If you can't get your account reinstated or does not intend to, you can alternatively use SMTP to send your emails. Here's a few alternatives you can use:

    1. Sendgrid http://www.sendgrid.com/
    2. Mailgun http://www.mailgun.com/
    3. Postmark https://postmarkapp.com/
    4. SocketLabs http://www.socketlabs.com/
    5. Mailjet http://www.mailjet.com/

    Please note that as Sendy is designed for Amazon SES, if you use other email service providers, bounces and complaints will not be registered. But these services may let you download emails that bounced or complained which you can then import into Sendy to mass delete or mass unsubscribed.

    Here's how to use other email service providers with Sendy via SMTP:

    1. Remove your Amazon SES credentials from Settings
    2. Edit your desired brand, then enter the SMTP credentials

    Your emails will be sent via SMTP with the settings you've set.

    Thanks.

    Best regards,
    Ben

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