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I was contacted by someone who was having trouble saving a mailing, get this error in CiviMail:

CiviMail error

I ended up comparing the version that saved with the version she had pasted in (which had some content additions) and then line by line (word by word) deleting the newly added text to try to identify a problem. It turns out it was the word "Reunion". I would delete the word and drafts would save, test emails could be sent... I would type the word back and the error would recur.

I've tried this on another install and had no problem using the word reunion so I am totally stumped as to how this could possibly occur. Any ideas?

  • That is wicked! Reunions can be boring... but to not allow them at all - that's just wicked! – KarinG - Semper IT May 5 '18 at 18:25
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    Perhaps a long shot but I recently had a similar problem (with Moodle, not CiviCRM, on a shared host) giving errors when a particular word was in the content. It turned out to be triggering a ModSecurity rule. Wouldn't have expected 'reunion' to do it though! – Andrew Thompson May 6 '18 at 23:52
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    Maybe, "Reunion" word in your mailing content include an invisible character which is creating a problem during save. Can you try TYPING the word separately at the required place instead of doing a copy paste (assuming that you were)? – jitendra - fuzion May 7 '18 at 5:55
  • Andrew's suggestion is possibly it, eg if "reunion" was picked up by mod_security as matching "union" along with some other SQL-looking words. – Chris Burgess May 7 '18 at 11:38
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    BINGO. @AndrewThompson do you want to add your comment as an answer? I'll edit it to fill it out with a little more detail from what I've found based on your pointer. – Laryn - CEDC.org May 7 '18 at 15:28
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I recently had a similar problem (with Moodle, not CiviCRM, on a shared host) giving errors when a particular word was in the content that was being submitted by the user. It turned out to be triggering a mod_security rule, resulting in a 403 error. Whitelisting that rule resolved the problem.

Edit (by Laryn): Here's the mod_security rule (#300016, "Generic SQL injection protection") that was triggered in this case: mod_security rule

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