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Why can’t I send email when I am on my VPN – (error message: SMTP refused)

When you send emails from your computer you use a protocol calledSMTP.

SMTP(Send Mail Transfer Protocol) is an outgoing mail protocol designed for mail exchange in general. Everyone hasSMTP, usually provided by yourISP(Internet Service Provider). You use anSMTPaddress when you work with an email client like Outlook. When you travel and use a laptop or portable device you may notice that you can’t send your emails from your Outlook email client. TheSMTPis blocked because theISPyou are on at that time, e.g. at a hotel, checks to see if yourSMTPis allowed on their network. Often it’s not. When you use VPN4ALL, our servers do not block any emails, however you are considered to be in a different country/region from yourISP, because your IP address is in a different location (on our server network) and in that case theISPwill block your emails on their network. When you use webmail services like Gmail or Yahoo you won’t have any problems at all because you don’t useSMTP.

Why do ISPs do this? To preventSPAM. As everyone knowsSPAMis monumental problem. People are overwhelmed bySPAM. Luckily there are many measures implemented by our ISPs such as spam blockers and filters. One of the measures ISPs have taken is to block emails that are sent out from IP addresses that are not those of their customers. Unfortunately this has created a problem forVPNproviders.

How to solve it? One option is to use a webmail provider such as Gmail or Yahoo or to have your own domain with itsSMTPaddress attached. Another option is to configure VPN4ALL to route your outgoing SMTP traffic directly via your ISP unencrypted.

If you have any questions about using your own domain or about webmail, please get in touch with support. We will be glad to help you with this.


Is the information incorrect or does it contradict what we say somewhere else at the site? These FAQs are a work in progress and unfortunately as a result our product updates and network changes we can't always get it right instantly in all the FAQs. Please let us know if you see something incorrect and we'll do everything we can to straighten out the misleading bits and pieces! None of these FAQs answer your question? Search our Knowledgebase or Ask Support.


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