Technology Training

How to block unwanted emails and messages

iPhone or iPad

Having an inbox full of email from unknown and unwanted spammy messages is frustrating not to mention time-intensive to clear out!

The good news is that Apple offers different ways to block folks from sending all that junk to your email’s inbox. And starting in iOS 13 and iPadOS, we have even more options to block specific email senders.

With iOs 13+ and iPadOS, you can now ignore your blocked senders using two features (Blocked and Blocked Sender Options) in Settings > Mail. This blocked contacts list is shared with Messages, FaceTime, and Phone and you can make changes in those app settings too!

Using iOS13+ or iPadOS–blocking email addresses just got a heck of a lot easier!

  1. Verify that the email address you want to block is in your Contactsapp
  2. If the address isn’t in your Contacts app, add it either to an existing contact or create a new contact card
  3. Once the email address is in Contacts, open your Settings app
  4. Tap Mail
  5. Under the Threading options, tap Blocked Sender Options

  1. Choose what you want to do with any mail from a blocked sender. Choices include NoneMark as Blocked Leave in Inbox or Move to Trash
  2. After you toggle that setting on, tap Blocked and choose Add New

Tap on the contact you want to block

If you enable Mail in iCloud, blocking a sender works across all your Apple devices

You can also block email from the Mail app


  • Open an email from a sender you want to block
  • Tap the name of the sender
  • Then tap the name listed next to From in the header
  • Choose Block This Contact
  • Confirm you want to block the contact
    • iOS and iPadOS add that contact to your Blocked list

    Once you block a contact via the Mail app , you won’t see email from that contact again in your Apple Mail app (you will still see it in your email provider’s app or when using a web browser.)

  • What happens to the blocked email?

    When you block a specified sender, that email is automatically moved to the trash.

    How do I unblock a contact?

    To unblock a contact, open Settings > Mail > Blocked and swipe on the contact you want to unblock. Then tap unblock.

You can unblock contacts from the settings menu for Messages, FaceTime, and Mail. Or open the Contacts App and unblock contacts there.

Additional blocking features in iOS13

Blocking unknown callers is also a lot easier in iOS 13.

Open Settings > Phone and toggle on Silence Unknown Callers.

Block or unsubscribe from emails using Gmail

If you’re getting emails you don’t want in your Gmail inbox, you can block or unsubscribe from the sender, or report the message to Gmail.

Important: If someone uses Gmail to harass, intimidate, or threaten you, they’re violating Gmail’s Program Policies. If you feel that you’re in danger, contact your local authorities right away, and ask whether any cyber harassment laws apply to your situation.

Tip: To block someone from sending you messages, or report a message as phishing, open the email from your computer.

Block an email address

When you block a sender, messages they send will go to your Spam folder.

  1. On your computer, open Gmail.
  2. Open the message.
  3. In the top right, click More .
  4. Click Block [sender].

Tip: If you blocked someone by mistake, you can unblock them using the same steps.

Unsubscribe from mass emails

If you signed up on a site that sends lots of emails, like promotions or newsletters, you can use the unsubscribe link to stop getting these emails. When you’ve received a lot of email from a sender that you haven’t opened for awhile, Gmail may suggest that you unsubscribe from that list.

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, open Gmail .
  2. Open an email from the sender you want to unsubscribe from.
  3. At the bottom of the message, tap Unsubscribe or Change preferences. If you don’t see these options, follow the steps above to block the sender or mark the message as spam.

Note: It may take a few days for the mailing list to stop sending you messages after you unsubscribe.

To stop seeing the Unsubscribe recommendations:

  1. In the top left, tap Menu   Settings the name of the account you want to change.
  2. Under “Inbox Tips,” tap Inbox Tips settings.
  3. Next to “Unsubscribe tips,” turn the switch off.

Remove spam or suspicious emails

Gmail tries to keep spam out of your inbox, but sometimes messages get through. If you see a spam message in your inbox:

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, open Gmail .
  2. Tap the sender’s profile image next to the message, or open the message.
  3. In the top right, tap More   Report Spam.

Tip: When you tap Report spam or manually move an email into your Spam folder, Google will receive a copy of the email and may analyze it to help protect our users from spam and abuse.


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