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Barracuda NextGen Firewall X

Why is email getting blocked by the Spam Filter even though I added the receipent to the whitelist?

  • Type: Knowledgebase
  • Date changed: 3 years ago
Solution #00007100 

NG Firewalls with a Spam Filter service


The Spam Filter service assigns each email a spam score using the default Apache SpamAssassin rules (viewable at If the email's spam score exceeds the threshold specified in the Spamfilter Settings on the NG, the email will be blocked.

The SpamAssassin rule corresponding to the "Whitelist To" configuration (SPAM Filter Settings > White and Blacklists) will only decrease the final spam score by 6; an email sent to a recipient specified in "Whitelist To" will not completely bypass spam filtering. It is possible that other spam checks will raise the final spam score above the threshold. For example, consider a Spam Filter setup in which the threshold is set to 5. An email is sent to a recipient whose address is in the "Whitelist To" configuration, reducing the spam score by 6. However, the recipient's IP address matches three different RBLs, each adding 4 to the spam score. Therefore, the final spam score is -6 + (3 * 4) = 6, one above the threshold of 5, and the email is blocked.

Note: You can view the spam scores that are assigned to emails and the action taken in the Mail Gateway log on the NG.

To ensure that all emails sent to whitelisted recipients are allowed through the Spam Filter, the corresponding rule should be modified to decrease the spam score by more than 6. In the Rules section (SPAM Filter Settings > Rules), add the following entry:


This will decrease the final spam score by 100 if the email recipient exists in the "Whitelist To" field.

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