While Gmail doesn’t filter all spam messages that could reach your inbox, it still does a better job as compared to other webmails such as Yahoo Mail or Hotmail. Apart from consistent improvements being done on Gmail’s filters, the utmost ingredient that contribute to the overall effectiveness is the use of community signals. Whenever you click on the “Mark as spam” button, Gmail uses that information to block similar future messages not only for you, but for all Gmail users.
As a matter of fact, regardless of how good a system is, there’s always a small fraction of spams that manage to sneak up on our mailbox. So, here are few things that we can do to further eliminate spams attempt.
1. Block image spam
As the webmail filters get better, spam also evolves and becomes harder to block. This is particularly true when it uses images and literary texts. Here’s a simple Gmail trick to divert spam messages (contain images) to the Trash folder (or any folder you specify) automatically.
Step 1: Firstly you need to go to ‘Settings > Filters’ and choose “Create a Filter”.
Step 2: Type ‘multipart/related .gif’ in the ‘Has the Words’ field and also check the ‘Has Attachment’ box.
Step 3: Click next and select “Delete It” to move the spam message directly to the GMail Trash folder.
Note: There’s a small chance of GMail filter triggering false positive and move few important emails from real senders to the Trash folder. To make sure this thing doesn’t happen, create a new folder (label) in gmail and change the instruction to redirect all related mails to the new folder. You can sort out the mails later on during your free time.
2. The Plus Hack
If you like to sign up for internet freebies or buy things online, this tip will definitely come handy. Creating alias emails for aforementioned activities which are very likely to spam you, is an effective way to completely reduce number of spams in your Gmail mailbox. Not only you can track who is the culprit and you can also accurately learn with whom your email is shared with.
To do this, simply put a ‘+’ after your account name and add words.
Example: I can do ‘eches+online_deal@gmail’ or ‘email@example.com’. All these mails will come into your mailbox anyway, but they can easily be filtered to a folder and even to trash them.
3. The Googlemail Hack
When you registered with Gmail account, you are actually given two email addresses
You can use both without having fear the later might not reach your mailbox. Like the above trick, you can take advantage of these two domains so that less spam reaches your Gmail Inbox via filtering system.
For example you distribute ‘yourusername @googlemail.com’ address to your close contacts while keeping the ‘yourusername @gmail.com’ address for public. Set filter such that all ‘yourusername @googlemail.com’ to be delivered to a special folder. This is a definitive way to ensure important messages not to be diverted to Trash folder by mistake.
4. The Dot Hack
Gmail doesn’t acknowledge dots (.) in your account name. So I can use ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ or without any dots at all. Either way will return to ‘email@example.com’.
Again you can use the power of filter system to divert certain aliases to specific folders or directly to Trash folder.
I hope you can you use some of the tips above to reduce spams in your Gmail mailbox. Again, these tips are not definitive ways to completely eliminate spams but they can effectively reduce the spam numbers.