Gmail is fast, secure, reliable, and a free service, but exposed to spam messages. You must be getting hundreds of spam messages every day. Who should take the blame for spam messages in your Gmail – Google or You? Often people blame Google. However, I do not agree with the argument. Your Gmail account gets hundreds of spam message is not entirely Google's fault. Based on my use of Gmail service for close to seven years, I can definitely say that it is user’s fault, too.
My experience with Gmail has been fantastic. Over the years, Google has continuously improved Gmail service for better safety, account protection, and quick detection of spam messages. In fact, rarely I get a spam message, which is malicious, sent to me with the intention to hijack my account. Hackers’ bot runs 24 by 7 to send such messages to compromise Gmail accounts with weak settings and unaware user. There is no stopping of malicious emails. However, Google blocks them right at the entry point. Isn't this a great success of Google?
The security of your email ID is your responsibility. Think twice before you hand over your email ID to someone unknown. The use of your email account is one of the ways to track your movement and to find loophole take control over your bank account, social media account, various other accounts linked to the email ID.
► Three Types of Spam Messages in Gmail
The type one is the spam messages sent to your email ID with the intention to hack your account, steal vital information from your account, or trap you in online fraud. With each passing day, Google systems are becoming smarter and smarter to catch and block such messages before delivered to your email inbox. So, nothing to worry about dangerous spam messages, Google has been very successful in preventing them.
The second type of spam messages for selling you something. For such spam messages, you are responsible, not Google. You share your email ID at hundred of places, so it is oblivious it is listed in spam mailer database. Such database is available for thousand rupees in local computer shops. This is how vulnerable your email account is if you freely share your essential email ID.
In all messages, the link to unsubscribe from the mailer list is there, but that does not work most of the time. The mailer gets money for the number of emails sent. You are not alone who is trying to unsubscribe from the database. If every unsubscribe request is honored, then the mailer list would become empty in a day. On your attempt to unsubscribe you get the message “You have successfully” unsubscribe but in reality your email ID is still in the database.
The third type of spam messages are the emails you get from eCommerce websites, news website, and various genuine places. Such emails cannot be marked spam. Hence, Google calls them promotional mail. In Gmail, under the PROMOTIONS tab all such messages are listed.
► How to Block and delete spam and promotional emails in Gmail?
Google has provided all the necessary features to keep Gmail accounts in order, in health status. I am going to guide how you can set rules in Gmail account to auto delete spam and promotional messages. Follow the next four steps to get your Gmail account in order.
Step One: Copy the original domain name from where the email was sent. Here you need to understand the difference between a domain and an account.
Suppose you are getting an email from [email protected] In this email ID, the account name is “abc,” and the domain is powermax.com.
If you create an alert for [email protected] then only the emails — sent from the email ID would be blocked. When the mailer sends email from a new account, let us say [email protected] then the message will pass through the filter and delivered to you. Creating a new email account on a server is as easy as sending a hello email to your friends.
However, if you create an alert for powermax.com then any message originated from the domain server will have to pass through the filter rule set in your Gmail account. Changing domain name is not that easy.
Thus, you have two options: block either a domain or an account on the domain name.
I am a customer of ICICI Lombard Insurance. My interaction with the company is only once in a year at the time of renewing the policy. However, I continuously get promotional emails for its latest services and related offers. Should I set a rule to block all communication from the Lombard server? Of course, not — then how would I get my policy document or any vital communication from the company? Therefore, in this case, I should not block the server instead; I will block the newsletter email from where I get the promotional messages.
I am getting the Lombard promotional messages — is not Google’s fault. The fast is I voluntarily had given my email ID to the insurance company.
Similarly, check the emails I get from the PhonePe. Transaction notification messages (critical) are from the email ID [email protected] and the promotional emails are from the [email protected]. Since I am not interested in offers, I am going to set a rule for [email protected]
This is how you set a rule so that essential emails delivered to email inbox whereas junk, promotional emails move automatically to spam folder or deleted.
Step Two: Go to the settings option in the settings of your Gmail account. You can look for it on the right side and from the drop-down list. This option in Gmail should be your favorite place to manage spam message.
Step Three: Next, proceed to “Filter and Blocked Addresses” and create a new filter. Paste the email domain in the BOX for “FROM.” Follow the screenshot below as how I have set a rule for a domain deadpoolswim.net. From the domain, I got several emails for a job opening at Accenture. It is an oblivious case of spam so let this domain be blocked forever.
At the filter page, there are various other options, too. Filter email based on “Sent To,” “Subject,” Has the word,” or “Doesn’t have.”
While researching this topic, I came across a YouTube video on how to block all spam messages in your email account in one go. While the method suggested is excellent but cannot be trusted for hundred percent results.
According to the video, create a rule wherein mention “unsubscribe” in the “HAS THE WORDS” option and proceed further. This filter would collect all the emails have the word “unsubscribe” in their details.
The problem with this method is even essential emails might be trashed from your Gmail account. There is a standard spam law that makes mandatory to have a link for unsubscribing in every email message. It is for allowing the email recipients to opt out from further communication from the sender email ID. Hence, it is entirely possible the method will delete even specific messages, which must be in your Gmail inbox for your review. Accordingly, I suggest not following the method.
The setting rule for each spam-mailing domain is the better way to tackle spam messages in your Gmail account adequately. You encounter a promotional & spam email, set a rule for the domain or the email ID from where it was sent — done. Over the time, your Gmail account gets free from spam messages and you get to see only genuine messages. You need to set some fifty or sixty rules to clear existing spam & promotional messages and block such messages being delivered to your account in future.
I have so far set 50 odd rules in my Gmail account. That deletes presumably not less than two to three hundred spam & promotional emails every day. You need not set all the rules on day one. Do it whenever you see a spam message. The filter function of Gmail has lot many usages to keep your Gmail account in an order. However, I restrict my discussion related to — how to block spam message in Gmail.
Step Four: Next you press the continue link at the downright corner, the dialog box moves to the next stage where select what action you wish to perform on the filtered message. For spam messages, I choose to “delete it.” Next, hit the update button.