AWS is sending complaints for all emails sent through SES all of a sudden


Hi Community,

We were using SES from past 2 years without a problem until now. Yesterday exactly after 3:00 IST, each and every mail sent through our server (NodeJS server hosted on EC2 server) is considered with complaints even if it is a legit mail. We use SMTP over https via nodemailer.

I have verified that an email sent even to my personal email id is also considered as complaints even if I do not mark it as SPAM. Please note, the email is delivered correctly to my mailbox.

We are clueless to understand the issue. Have you also faced this issue and what could be possible cause? This is hampering our business.

Let us know what you need to solve it. Thanks a lot.

asked 9 months ago417 views
1 Answer

<<Apologies for long verbiage>>

I’ve also faced this issue in one of my personal account, where I got this email:



Your current bounce rate is X%. We measured this rate over the last X eligible emails* you sent. Our analysis covers the last X days.

We recommend that you maintain a bounce rate below 5%. If your bounce rate exceeds 10%, we might pause your ability to send additional email.

The bounce rate is based on the number of hard bounces that occur as a result of the emails you send. A hard bounce occurs when an email address doesn't exist.

Email providers interpret a high bounce rate as a sign that you're not actively managing your customer database, or that you're sending unsolicited email. Email providers might block your email if your bounce rate is too high. To protect your reputation as a sender, we monitor this metric closely and take action if the rate gets too high.

For more information about what to do if your account is under review or your account's ability to send email is paused, see our Enforcement FAQ at You can also use the Enforcement Dashboard to monitor the bounce and complaint rates for your account. For more information, see

If you're testing your system's ability to process bounce or complaint events, you should use the Amazon SES mailbox simulator. You can send email to the mailbox simulator without impacting the reputation metrics for your account. For more information, see

*The number of eligible emails is based on the number of recipients, rather than the number of messages. For example, we count an email with 30 recipients on the BCC: line as 30 eligible emails.


If we don't hear back from you or if the problem hasn't been resolved within the next X emails you send, we'll pause your ability to send email using Amazon SES in order to protect your reputation as a sender.


First, you should have a system in place for monitoring bounces and complaints. When you receive a bounce notification, you should immediately stop sending email to the address that resulted in the bounce or complaint, and ensure that you don't attempt to contact that address again in the future. We recommend you manage your reputation by using the following SES features:

Second, use the bounce information that you collect to analyze your email-sending practices and determine what caused the bounces. For example, how did you collect the email addresses that you're contacting? Did you collect the addresses by using a web form that could be exploited? Are you sending test emails to fictitious addresses? Identifying the causes of these bounces can help you determine which changes to implement. You can reply to this message to request a small sample of recent messages that resulted in bounces.

Third, make changes to your sending processes or procedures based on your analysis of the issue. Implement these changes fully before you proceed to the next step.

Finally, contact us with answers to the following questions:

  • What caused your high bounce rate?
  • What changes have you made in your email-sending systems or processes?
  • How do these changes ensure that the issue won't occur again in the future? We'll evaluate your responses to these questions. If we agree that your changes address this issue, we'll reset the metrics for your account, and end your review period or restore your account's ability to send email.

Important: After we end your review period or restore your account's ability to send email, you still have to keep your bounce rate at an acceptable level. If the bounce rate gets too high, we'll place your account under review, or pause your ability to send email again. If your bounce rate repeatedly exceeds these limits, we'll permanently suspend your account's ability to send email using SES.


I added a monitoring mechanism for bounce rate and informed about this change then restriction was lifted.

Also, take a look at this re:Post Thread.

Hope this may give you some insight.


profile pictureAWS
answered 9 months ago
  • Hi, Thank you for your answer.

    1. Bounce rate and complaint rates were well below the warning levels required by AMAZON SES, (2.07% and 0.03% respectively)

    2 The problem happened all of a sudden after 3:00 PM IST.

    1. Even the mail sent to self (sender = receiver) is delivered but marked with complaint email:

    "This is an email abuse report for an email message with the message-id of <xxxxxxx> received from IP address <xx.xx.xx.xx> on Sun, 03 Sep 23 21:51:55 UTC. This is the list of the complaint emails:"

    actual content replaced with xx.

    So what next?

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