Junk emails, also known as spam, can clutter your inbox and make it difficult to manage your real emails effectively. Microsoft Outlook has built-in tools to help filter and block junk emails so you can keep your inbox clean. Here are some tips for filtering junk mail in Outlook:
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Use the Junk Email Filter
Outlook comes with a Junk Email Filter that can automatically detect and divert emails suspected to be spam into your Junk Email folder. Here’s how to enable it:
- Go to the Home tab > Junk > Junk Email Options
- Under the Options tab, set the level of protection to Low or High depending on how aggressive you want the filter to be
- Check the boxes for “Disable links and other functionality in phishing messages” and “Warn me about suspicious domain names in e-mail addresses” for added protection
Be sure to periodically check your Junk Email folder to ensure legitimate emails have not ended up there accidentally. You can mark emails as “Not Junk” if that occurs.
Block Specific Senders
If you receive a lot of spam from a particular sender, you can block their emails entirely:
- Right-click on a spam email
- Select Junk > Block Sender
- This will add the sender to your Blocked Senders list and any future emails will go straight to the Junk folder
You can also manually add email addresses or domain names to your Blocked Senders list to preemptively block senders.
Create Email Rules
Another way to filter junk mail is by creating inbox rules in Outlook. Here’s how:
- Go to Home > Rules > Create Rule
- Select conditions like “Subject contains”, “Sent from” etc.
- Specify what action you want the rule to take e.g. move message to Junk Email folder
- Click OK to apply the rule
With some trial and error, you can fine-tune rules to accurately detect and divert spam emails.
Leverage Safe Senders List
Outlook’s Safe Senders list lets you mark trusted contacts whose emails will never go to the Junk folder. Add important contacts to ensure you receive their emails.
- Go to Junk Email Options > Safe Senders tab
- Click Add and enter email addresses you want to mark as safe
- Mails from these senders will skip the spam filter
Set Stringent Filtering on Junk Folder
Make your Junk Email folder stringent by only allowing emails from safe senders into your inbox:
- In Junk Email Options, under Options tab, select Safe Lists Only
- This will send every email from new or unrecognized senders straight to the Junk folder
- Remember to check it occasionally for incorrectly filtered emails
Enable Junk Mail Reporting
You can help Microsoft improve its spam detection by turning on junk mail reporting:
- Go to Settings > Mail > Automatic Processing > Junk Email Reporting
- Choose an option e.g. Automatically send reports to send feedback on emails you mark as junk
By rigorously using these filtering tools, you can effectively control the influx of junk emails into your Outlook inbox. Stay vigilant in blocking new spam senders and your inbox will remain clean.