Legal Intercept

Revision as of 19:28, 19 May 2008 by Cfremon (talk | contribs) (Purpose: Editing for style)


Service Providers are increasingly under the legal obligation to capture any persistent state changes within a separate archive mailbox for legal intercept/discovery. For example, if a message is saved as a draft, and then deleted, this still needs to be recorded somehow in the archive mailbox as this mechanism could be used by multiple users to communicate (one writes a draft, the other reads and deletes) without necessarily having those communications ever make it into the archive mailbox.

Legal Intercept is the ability to intercept user messages and send them to another mailbox. Once intercept is turned on, any time that the user sends a message, receives a message, or saves a draft, an intercept message is sent to the specified mailbox with the original message attached. This is different than forwarding, here a new message envelope is constructed to avoid the possibility of bounces returning to the original sender or monitored user.

Note: This feature is implemented in ZCS 5.0.3+.

Command Usage

To enable:

zmprov ma zimbraInterceptAddress

To check status:

zmprov ga | grep zimbraInterceptAddress

To disable:

zmprov ma zimbraInterceptAddress ''


zmprov ma -zimbraInterceptAddress

Intercept Values

zimbraInterceptAddress: intercept messages are sent to this address. When empty, lawful intercept is turned off.

zimbraInterceptSendHeadersOnly: when TRUE, only the headers are sent, not the message body.

For headers only mode (no message body) you would set:

zmprov ma zimbraInterceptSendHeadersOnly TRUE

Message Composition Templates

zimbraInterceptFrom: Template used to construct the From: header of the intercept message.

zimbraInterceptSubject: Template used to construct the Subject: header of the intercept message.

zimbraInterceptBody: Template used to construct the body of the intercept message.

The default format of the body of the intercept message is currently:

Intercepted message for []. 
Operation=[add message], folder=[Inbox], folder ID=[2].
Template Values

The following parameters can be passed to the from/subject/body templates:

ACCOUNT_DOMAIN - Domain of the account being intercepted.

ACCOUNT_ADDRESS - Address being intercepted.

MESSAGE_SUBJECT - Subject of the message being intercepted.

OPERATION - Operation that the user is performing ("add message", "send message", "save draft")

FOLDER_NAME - Name of the folder to which the message was saved.

FOLDER_ID - ID of the folder to which the message was saved.

NEWLINE - Used for formatting multi-line message bodies.


In 5.0.3 there's some additional manual configuration needed Bug 26471 - intercept throws NPE (solved in 5.0.5+)

(Workaround is to manually set all the 'zimbraIntercept' COS attributes else you will get an error in the Web-UI.)

For example,
zmprov mc default zimbraInterceptSendHeadersOnly FALSE
zmprov mc default zimbraInterceptFrom "Postmaster <postmaster@\${ACCOUNT_DOMAIN}>"
zmprov mc default zimbraInterceptSubject "Intercepted message for \${ACCOUNT_ADDRESS}: \${MESSAGE_SUBJECT}"
zmprov mc default zimbraInterceptBody "Intercepted message for \${ACCOUNT_ADDRESS}.\${NEWLINE}Operation=\${OPERATION}, folder=\${FOLDER_NAME}, folder ID=\${FOLDER_ID}."

Also the under construction: Bug 21761 - Legal intercept support: IM (real-time reporting vs periodic method of save in chats folder etc)

See also Zimbra Archiving & Discovery add-on which does envelope forking & included cross-mailbox search.

Verified Against: ZCS 5.0.3+ Date Created: 4/11/2008
Article ID: Date Modified: 2008-05-19

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