What are spam filters blocking

Block spam emails: This will save your inbox

Just a few hours ago you cleaned up your e-mail inbox and answered all the important messages. And now your account is almost overflowing with new e-mails. But the majority of your electronic mail actually belongs in the trash: spam mails and mails, from senders unknown to you and with highly questionable content. This is extremely annoying - but it doesn't have to be. Because there are various ways to get rid of this junk. UPDATED explains what measures the various mail providers have in place to get the spam under control.

A spam filter can do that

The term spam mail, also known as junk mail, is broadly defined: it includes unwanted advertising as well as illegal offers or mass mails of any kind. Even electronic mail with fraudulent intent and virus mails belong to spam. So that this spam does not show up in your inbox, almost every mail provider has a spam filter that Detect unwanted mail automatically and should sort out. This software filters the advertising emails based on criteria such as sender and content.

However, you have the option of making settings on your spam filter. To do this, log into your email account on the website of your provider. Under the settings or options, the option “Spam filter”, ”Junk mail” or something similar appears. Here you have various configuration options to choose from, for example whether emails with certain keywords should generally be classified as spam.

New scam: calendar spam

Fraudsters have discovered a new scam with so-called calendar spam. They rubbish mailboxes and even digital calendars with them wrong appointment invitations full. Those who accept this will be annoyed by reminders about the spam appointment popping up; whoever rejects them shows the fraudsters that the e-mail address is active - and encourages them to send even more spam. However, most email providers have already recognized the problem and introduced new protection against calendar spam.

Reduce spam mail: block senders

You can significantly reduce the number of unwanted emails by using Block individual senders or entire domains. Emails from these people or organizations will then no longer be delivered to you. It can make sense to generally prevent e-mails from “exotic” countries in which you have no contacts and from which you do not expect any messages. Most mail providers provide such blocking configurations.

For example, you get a lot of spam from Romania, but you also have a friend there? Then you can basically move mail from this country to the spam folder, but add your friend's contact to the list of safe senders. In this way, the e-mails from this address bypass the spam filter.

Configuring the spam filter: step-by-step instructions

With these instructions for three common mail providers you are on the safe side. The processes of the other providers are very similar to the following.


In Outlook, the repository for unwanted mail is called junk e-mail. All mails that are identified as spam go into this folder. The post is automatically deleted there after 30 days. The setting of the security level from “low” to “high” is no longer possible in the current version. But you can configure the filter as follows:

  1. Click the gear icon and follow below Settings the path E-mail > Junk email.
  2. There you can block senders or domains or add safe senders and mailing lists.
  3. If an email has ended up in the junk mail folder by mistake, you can move it by clicking on No junk email in your inbox. By clicking on Phishing you report a fraudulent phishing attempt and the email is permanently deleted.
As with Outlook, you can move e-mails that have ended up in the junk mail folder to another folder, mark them as a phishing attempt or block the sender.


At GMail, the folder for unwanted mail is simply called spam. Here, too, the post is automatically deleted after 30 days. In principle, you cannot set your own filter levels with GMail either. You configure the filter as follows:

  1. Click on the gear icon and follow the path Settings > Filters and blocked addresses.
  2. There you can block email addresses. These then appear in the spam folder and are not completely retained.
  3. Under Create a new filter you can also determine in which case a mail should be pushed into the spam folder. To do this, you either enter email addresses or certain keywords that are typical for spam mail, such as Viagra or rich.


Web.de offers a multitude of possibilities to adapt the spam protection and the spam filter according to your wishes. This is how you do it:

  1. Follow the path in the inbox Settings > Email security.
  2. There you can choose between 3-way spam protection and 2-way spam protection. Next to the folders Friends & acquaintances and Spam there is a third folder Unknown. E-mails with a spam probability of over 75 percent are always put in the folder Spam sorted. For emails with a spam probability of 26 to 75 percent, you can specify whether they should be in the folder Spam or the folder Unknown be sorted.
  3. Deactivate the option Show unknown folder, the folder is deleted. With this 2-way spam protection, only between Spam and No spam differentiated. Desired e-mails end up in the folder Inbox, everyone else in the folder Spam.
  4. In the category Blacklist you can completely block a spam sender.

This is how you protect your e-mail address from spam mail

You can help limit the receipt of spam emails as much as possible. Please note the following so that your mailbox really only reaches the people and topics you want to know about:

  • Do not generate any email addresses that consist only of your name and a common mail provider, for example [email protected] Because the mass mailers try out different addresses using word and name lists.
  • Be careful about distributing your email address on the Internet. Dubious competition providers may resell them or bots may collect the address if you have published it somewhere.
  • Don't show your email address publicly in forums or chats. This can usually be set in the profile settings.
  • Use multiple email addresses. Use one only for really important and serious communication with personal contacts, the other for activities in forums, competitions or in social networks. Many mail providers allow multiple mail addresses per member by default, all of which can be accessed from the same access.
  • Move unwanted mail to the trash without reading it. If you reply to them or click on any of the links, the spammers will know that the email address is active and will harass you even more.
Spam emails are a nuisance on both laptops and smartphones.

Spam mails: annoying but easy to handle

As annoying as spam emails are, they are easy to handle thanks to increasingly better functioning spam filters and blocking options. It is inevitable that emails end up in the wrong inbox, but the more senders you declare as “safe” or “spam”, the fewer errors will creep in and the clearer your mailbox will be.

Disclaimer OTTO (GmbH & Co KG) assumes no liability for the correctness, topicality, completeness, effectiveness and harmlessness of the information and recommendations made available on updated.de. It is expressly pointed out that the official manufacturer's specifications are to be observed with priority over all other information and recommendations and only these can guarantee a safe and proper use of the respective purchase items.

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