How one character “>” can make all of your mail disappear

We had a strange situation today where a user received a mail message that had a subject something like “NBCC > INTERCON”

This user was using the OpenNTF1.7b template, and was using DWA with a web browser.

For some strange reason, when this message appeared in the inbox, or was filed in a personal folder, the rest of the messages in the folder disappeared.

Deleting the message made all the messages re-appear.

We suspected the “>” character. It turned out that if we copied and pasted the subject of the original offending messages, we received the weird issue.

BUT, if we just typed “>” from the keyboard, we did not receive the issue. So the point is that the message subject character “>” was generated by something other than a keyboard, or was corrupted in transport somehow.

Who would have thought?

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