Webaccess links force to new window

While our primary Groupwise is 2014, we still have one webaccess server running on 2012 for technical reasons. We are hoping to upgrade to 2018 in the near future but have had this issue arise that I'd like to find out if it is a bug, a 2012 limitation, or can be addressed.

If we send a message to a user and the message has a hyperlink in it to a website, if opened in the 2014 desktop client, it opens the default browser and goes to that webpage correctly. If opened in 2014 webaccess, it also opens the default browser correctly. However, if the same message is opened in the 2012 webaccess, it tries to open the link INTERNAL to the message (i.e., in the opened message window) and does not launch a browser. This has been duplicated in multiple browsers so its not specific on IE or firefox or chrome.

I've looked for a setting in 2012 webaccess to force the behavior of clicked links but can't find anything.

Am I overlooking the obvious or is this a "upgrade to 2018" fix?