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I received a mail from a new contact and the Inbox Preview in Yahoo Web Mail shows this:

Preview


I see text like

Dear Sir Greeting.

When I open the email to get the Normal view, there is no text matching the Preview. To be specific, the words:

Thank you for the interest

are missing:

Normal view

I can only see text like:

Dear Sir 8 Attachments (sic)

I looked at the headers and see that this is a forwarded mail; "In-Reply-To", "Message-ID" and "References" all refer to mail.gmail.com, with some long hash keys. Neither current sender nor receiver is using Gmail, but I assume the mail originated on Gmail and I received it after many intermediate forwards.

What is going on?

Is this a bug in Yahoo Web Mail?

  • Instead of downvoting, would it not be better to suggest how I can improve this question ?? What exactly is wrong with this question ?? – Prem Mar 28 '16 at 15:41
  • Add the email headers, but mask the part of the IP address and email addresses usernames. – Rubén Mar 28 '16 at 18:52
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From my comment

I don't know how Yahoo Email works but the preview text is very likely that comes from the email itself. The original email message could include several parts in order to make a message readable in text only email clients, to look fine in email clients that supports HTML and so on. It's very likely that the preview comes from the text only part and the that the HTML part is malformed (missing a < or a whole tag).

To learn more about multipart email messages see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIME

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I still do not know where the Preview text is coming from, but I hope those with inner knowledge of Yahoo! or WebMail will be able to chip in with inputs, proofs, disproofs, or references.

My suspicion is the the MessageID (originating on Gmail) is matching some entry in the caches in Yahoo! Web Mail servers, where the original mail did have that text, hence the Preview is correct for that original mail. After lot of forwards and modifications, that text has been removed from the latest mail, but the cache entry for the MessageID still has the Preview Image and that is getting shown in my Inbox Preview, but the Normal view shows exactly what the mail contains, where the text is missing.

If my suspicion is correct, then it is a security & privacy leak, where I am seeing text sent to other recipients. Cache should not be shared between users, unintentionally leaking small bits of text.

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    I don't know how Yahoo Email works but the preview text is very likely that comes from the email itself. The original email message could include several parts in order to make a message readable in text only email clients, to look fine in email clients that supports HTML and so on. It's very likely that the preview comes from the text only part and the that the HTML part is malformed (missing a < or a whole tag). – Rubén Mar 28 '16 at 19:04
  • @Rubén , Bingo !!!! Earlier, I had tried to forward it to my gmail account and check, but saw nothing new. Now, I tried two options in gmail : "SHOW ORIGINAL" & "MESSAGE TEXT GARBLED?" ; both showed the missing text and a whole lot more mail content ; I also saw /div> with a missing <. Request you to add your comment as an answer, so that I can accept it. – Prem Mar 29 '16 at 3:43
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    I copied my comment to an answer :) – Rubén Mar 29 '16 at 23:11

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