in Electronic Mail

hacking Outlook’s info line

I started subscribing to the freebsd-mobile mailing list now that I’m running FreeBSD on my ThinkPad T42. Unfortunately, we use Microsoft [Virus] Exchange at work, so I read my e-mail using Evolution using the Exchange Connector.

I was amused to see that it’s possible to hijack the status line in both Outlook for Windows (the thick client) and OWA (Outlook Web Access). Some enterprising soul has figured out that Microsoft inserts an X-message-flag pseudo-header into any e-mail that it wants to specially flag, even if that message never originally contained the header.

This has amusing results:

You can see how the culprit executes this little trick by viewing the raw message source.