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VPN and e-mail connection problems

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8 REPLIES 8
johndcq
Conversation Starter

Hello

 

I have used a VPN connection to my office for the last few years at least. I have seen on this forum that other people had problems, but I did not until the new TalkTalk e-mail. At first I was willing to allow a settling in period, but it is getting worse. What happens is:

 

a) When my VPN connects to the remote server, I get a red message on the TalkTalk e-mail window saying "Server unreachable". This is not half annoying when I am halfway through sending a lengthy e-mail. Alternatively, I get a message telling me "Your IP address has changed" or asks me to enter my password again - something I am obviously concerned about. Once the VPN has connected and the desktop established, I can re-sign in to TalkTalk or entter the password again and all seems fine, until...

 

b) Until the VPN connection suddenly drops out and I get the messages as in a). I then have to re-establish the VPN, the RDP and sign in to TalkTalk again.

 

Using the internet, I expect some occasional disturbance. But not EVRY time I connect the VPN and try to work. This is beyond the point that I can tolerate it, and I would appreciate some help please. This did not happen before the TalkTalk new e-mail system.

 

Thanks

 

John

 

b)

Gondola
Community Star

Hi John

 

Looks like your VPN connection is dropping out and possibly reverting to your non VPN broadband service connection.

 

It is true that the TalkTalk Mail service doesn't like the IP address changing during a session.  It detects multiple IP addresses being used and terminates the session on the basis that a sign in from different locations (different IP addresses) is seen as a possible sign that the email account has been compromised.

 

The root cause is down to the VPN connection dropping. Fix that and there won't be a problem with TalkTalk Mail.

Gondola - Volunteer 2017-2021

To appreciate my help . . . If I offered a solution Best Answer


johndcq
Conversation Starter
Hi Gondola

Thanks for that. But I am not, as far as I know, changing my IP address. There is no sign-in coming from the remote server. I sign on to that, to use RDP on my desktop in the office. I had no problem with the VPN connection dropping until TalkTalk introduced their new e-mail system.

At present, I believe it is the TalkTalk e-mail causing the VPN to drop. Can you suggest any tests?

Thanks

John
Gondola
Community Star

Hi John

 

If your IP address is not changing when connected to TalkTalk Mail then you need to be concerned and change the mailbox password.

 

TalkTalk Mail will detect multiple concurrent connections from different IP addresses and may shut down the access if it believes the mailbox access is compromised. 

 

For example, a VPN server may be based in the Netherlands and present one public IP address. If the connection to that drops and the local Internet access reverts to a UK broadband connection with it's public IP address then the protection algorithm says the user isn't usually in two different countries so is this account compromised?

 

But if you say your public IP address does not change then is someone else signing in to your TalkTalk Mail? The fix is easy. Change the password for the email mailbox to secure it.

 

I've never heard of a webmail service or an email client connection shutting down a VPN connection. I have heard of VPN servers being unreliable and the normal fix is to try a different server if one is available.  But if this is just your work VPN providing access to the Internet then I guess you don't have much flexibility.

 

If you're using an email client via the VPN but that client isn't configured to use SSL/TLS encryption then I'd start with using the recommended client settings: Email settings - IMAP or POP3 as it's important to get authenticated sending in the same way as needed if you're connecting to the TalkTalk SMTP server from another network.

 

But what I'd do is secure your TalkTalk Mail account with a password change and then reconfigure your local VPN client to revert to your home broadband connection when you wish to use TalkTalk Mail. Or not use the VPN when accessing TalkTalk Mail so you can prove the TalkTalk broadband connection is good.

 

You can also run a Service Status check from your MyAccount to check the connection.

 

Check your Community Profile Personal Information (Click here) includes your name, current TalkTalk landline 'phone number and an alternate number (mobile recommended) and address with postcode (location). Add, then scroll down and add the email address to Private notes and save changes. The TalkTalk Community Team OCE will link to your TalkTalk service account and follow up for you.

Gondola - Volunteer 2017-2021

To appreciate my help . . . If I offered a solution Best Answer


johndcq
Conversation Starter

Thankyou, but I think we are getting too complex. I am using a simple Windows VPN connection to my office. There is no third party VPN provider, which may "spoof" or otherwise assign an IP address whether for devious purposes or not. I am using my broadband connection to provide a tunnel to the office server and that is all, while also using webmail and other web pages. Somehow when I connect to the office server via the VPN, TalkTalk mail thinks I have changed my IP address. Is the security over-sensitive? This did not happen 5 years ago, or 4 or 3 etc.

 

John

Gondola
Community Star

...it is true that TalkTalk Mail does flag up multiple concurrent connections to the Mailbox. Maybe it is in need of an extra level of checking to see if the IP addresses belong to different type of connection from the same country.  For example, concurrent connections from a business VPN and a home broadband connection or from a mobile network and a home broadband connection.

 

I'll flag this up to TalkTalk.

 

In the meantime, to avoid the issue you can sign out of TalkTalk Mail before signing in via the VPN. Or sign out of the VPN to use TalkTalk Mail. The key thing is not to have two sign in's active via two routes.

Gondola - Volunteer 2017-2021

To appreciate my help . . . If I offered a solution Best Answer


OCE_Chris
Community Team - TT Staff

Hi John,


So just to confirm, if you don't log into you TalkTalk email your VPN doesn't drop, it only drops if you're logged into your email?

Chris

johndcq
Conversation Starter

Hi Chris

 

I am always logged in to the webmail before connecting the VPN. I will do some tests the other way round and report back. Sorry, I've been out most of this afternoon/evening and am not long back. Probably out  a lot tomorrow also.

 

Regards

 

John

OCE_Chris
Community Team - TT Staff

OK thanks John 🙂

Chris