Fix email delivery issues for error code 5.1.8 (550 5.1.8 Access denied) in Exchange Online

Getting an error message that means the mail you sent wasn't delivered is frustrating. This topic tells you what to do if you get error code 550 5.1.8 Access denied in a non-delivery report (also known as an NDR, bounce message, delivery status notification, or DSN), and mail isn't delivered.

       
Email user icon. I got this bounce message. How do I fix it? Email admin icon I'm an email admin. How do I fix this email delivery issue?

What is 550 5.1.8 and why did I get this bounce message?

You received this NDR with error code 5.1.8 because your account has been blocked for sending too much spam. Typically, this problem occurs because your account has been compromised (hacked) by phishing or malware.

I got this bounce message. How do I fix it?

First, you need to reset your password and scan your devices for malware. However, the hacker might have configured other settings on your mailbox (for example, created Inbox rules to auto-forward email messages or added additional mailbox delegates). So, follow the additional steps in How to determine whether your account has been compromised.

Then, you need to tell your email admin that you think your account has been compromised. Your admin will need to unblock your account before you can send email again.

I'm an email admin. How do I fix this email delivery issue?

The sending account might be compromised. You'll need to:

Still need help with error code 5.1.8?

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See also

Email non-delivery reports in Exchange Online