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Starting with version 2.5.1, we have added a new feature that allows filtering out bot-generated opens and clicks, a functionality that has been long requested by our customers.

Background on "Fake" Opens/Clicks

The opens/clicks rate provides marketers with insights into the effectiveness of their email campaigns in capturing recipients' attention, allowing them to adjust email content accordingly.

To protect networks and identify potentially harmful emails, security companies have developed software solutions. One technique involves following every link in each email to identify malicious websites before delivering the email to the recipient. This results in "fake" opens and clicks, which can distort the campaign's performance metrics.

MailWizz already had a setting to skip recording actions made by bots identified through their user-agents. However, this was not a foolproof solution, prompting us to develop smarter and more effective methods.

MailWizz's Campaigns Smart Tracking Feature

Here is how our implementation works and its main components:

  • We maintain an ignore list that records IPs caught by our trap rules. This list includes a status column, which is set to active by default. If a legitimate IP is mistakenly added, the administrator can set it as inactive, allowing future actions from that IP to be recorded.
  • Each email includes a hidden link that, when clicked, records the action in the ignore list.
  • We use a three-step validation process for any action:
    • Check against the ignore list.
    • Check the time elapsed since the email was delivered. Rapid opens/clicks (within the first 30 seconds) may indicate bot activity.
    • Check the number of actions within a specified timeframe. More than five actions within ten seconds suggest bot behavior.

Getting Started

Once the application is updated to the latest version, two new options for opens/clicks smart tracking will be visible under 'Campaign tracking options' during the campaign setup step.

Note that this option is disabled by default. It must be enabled for new campaigns, and opens/clicks tracking must also be activated for it to work.

If an action fails any of the validation rules, it will be added to the Campaigns Tracking Ignore List, which can be managed via Backend->Miscellaneous->Campaigns Tracking Ignore List.

If the IP hosting your MailWizz application ends up in the ignore list, it will be highlighted in blue. This might occur during campaign testing.

Entries in the ignore list can be set to inactive, treating future actions from that IP as legitimate. Deleting an entry means it could be re-evaluated and possibly added to the ignore list again.


This feature is new and experimental, so use with caution.
Current validation rules are subject to change at any time, this is the reason why MailWizz does not expose them currently.

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