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Forwarding Messages Automatically

Updated Tuesday, October 27, 2020


Forwarding messages from one account to another is very common nowadays. While forwarding is a hack on email systems, it is so common that it has become an assumed functionality.

However, we advise users not to forward messages. Forwarding breaks email protections which are essential today and impairs authenticity and spam detection.

The reason is that email protocols do not know what forwarding means. Email transfers messages from source to destination. If the destination point wants to pass along the message further, it will be impersonating the source. The message now gets resent from someone that is not the authentic source and the final recipient’s email service gets confused about the authenticity of the message.

This leads to issues that may cause forwarded messages to be dropped. Gmail does this a lot, which would mean unless you save the message elsewhere before forwarding, the message would be irrevocably lost.

Forwarding can also hurt the domain’s email reputation. If a spam messages get forwarded, then the question of the origin of those messages arises. The final recipient’s email service may not care to do additional spam filtering and may start rejecting messages from the forwarder as well the original sender.

The bottom line is, if you do forward, please be aware of the possible implications. You can find the forwarding option under the mailbox level in the admin menu.

Forwarding in the admin panel

Confirmation Required

To create a forwarding, a confirmation is required. As soon as you create the forwarding in the Migadu admin, we will send out an email to the destination so it can accept the forwarding request.

On active domains within your Migadu account, no confirmation is required.

If you create often forwardings to some specific domains in your control outside of Migadu, we can pre-approve them to skip the confirmation step.

Recipients Limit

A Migadu mailbox can forward up to 25 destinations.

Principle of Operation

Unlike as you may have seen in other systems, Migadu can forwards only from an existing mailbox. What actually happens in the background is that the message lands into the mailbox from where it is redirected using Sieve scripts.

There is a good reason for this behavior. Messages that do not make it to the Inbox are not forwarded. That means junk remains in the Junk folder on the mailbox, from where it gets purged periodically deleted . Once the message gets saved, our Sieve scripts attempt a redirect to the external destination using our relaying servers.

In case the final destination does not accept the message due to any reason, the message is not lost. A copy is preserved in the mailbox.