How to Block Emails in Gmail

How to Block Emails in Gmail

Customer service teams with public email addresses are particularly prone to receiving spam in their inbox, and you should learn how to block emails in Gmail. This makes it more likely you will see the emails you want than lose sight of them in a sea of correspondence. 

catherine heath

Last updated: October 3, 2023

8 mins read

Keeping a tidy inbox is vital for anyone who wants to become more productive. Managing your emails means blocking unwanted senders so you receive more of the email you want to receive instead of junk or spam – or even phishing attacks. 

While it’s possible to unsubscribe from many emails you get in Gmail, some senders don’t always give you that option, especially if they are malicious. Receiving emails you don’t want is time-consuming but we can’t always control everyone who gets hold of our email address – especially if you’ve been using that email address for a long time. 

Customer service teams with public email addresses are particularly prone to receiving spam in their inbox, and you should learn how to block emails in Gmail. This makes it more likely you will see the emails you want than lose sight of them in a sea of correspondence. 

Blocking emails is very simple for anyone with a Gmail account. 

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Why block emails in Gmail? 

You might want to block emails in Gmail for a number of reasons: 

  • You signed up for too many newsletters – you no longer want to hear about offers from companies you only wanted a discount coupon from. 

  • Users are sending you spam that clutters up your inbox – senders are asking for personal details or offering to invest in your company. 

  • You are receiving emails that might contain viruses – the email generally looks untrustworthy and from an unsafe sender. 

  • You suspect phishing attacks are being sent to your address – senders are pretending to be verified sites or organizations trying to steal your identity. 

Whatever the reason, you have the right to a tidy inbox and to avoid senders who don’t have your best interests at heart. When you’re receiving spam, there is usually no option to unsubscribe and you typically want to avoid opening suspicious emails in the first place. 

When you block unwanted senders, you can spend more time dealing with emails that are important to you instead of deleting junk that lands in your inbox. Customer service teams see an inbox that is filled with customer communication instead of dubious proposals from Nigerian princes. 

Blocking all future emails from a sender takes less time than manually deleting them as they come in, and may help you get closer to reaching inbox zero

Can you block someone from emailing you?

Like many other providers such as Outlook and Yahoo, Gmail allows you to block unfriendly emails or any email you wish to remove from your inbox. Once you block an email, you will no longer receive emails from that address. 

When you block someone from sending you an email, they don’t receive a notification and can’t tell that you’re not receiving their emails anymore. When you block an email, in the future, it goes straight to your spam folder, and you never have to hear from them again. 

The downside to blocking email addresses in Gmail instead of just deleting it is that you have actually to open one of their emails to do so. We’ll also show you a way of removing an email without opening it, to make sure you stay safe from viruses as well, which may be triggered even by simply opening an email. 

Overall, blocking someone in Gmail is a good way to stay safe and use your email account in a sensible way. 

How to block an email address in Gmail

There are multiple ways to block an email address in Gmail using your desktop, and we will show you both. The easiest way to block an email is from your main inbox. These instructions assume you are using Gmail on the desktop. 

How to Block Email in Gmail

Follow these steps: 

  1. Make sure you are logged into Gmail. 

  2. When you receive an unwanted email, open it in your Gmail inbox.

  3. Click on the three dots on the right-hand top corner of the message. 

  4. In the dropdown that opens, click Block “SENDER”. 

  5. In the dialog that opens, click Block. 

Now, in the future, all emails from this sender’s email address will go automatically to your spam folder. 

Another way to block unwanted emails in Gmail is to set up a filter. This means that you don’t have to open the email before you can block it, keeping you safer from viruses that may be triggered upon opening an email. 

Follow these steps: 

  1. Make sure you are logged into Gmail. 

  2. Go to Gmail settings by clicking the cog icon in the top right-hand corner of the screen. 

  3. Select See all settings. 

  4. Navigate to the Filters and Blocked Addresses tab. 

  5. In the screen that opens, select Create a new filter. 

  6. Enter the email address you want to block in the From field. 

  7. Click search. 

  8. This will bring up all the emails you have received from that sender. 

  9. Select the checkbox at the top of the list of emails to check all emails. 

  10. In the top menu, select the icon in the octagon to Report Spam. 

  11. The messages will be removed from your inbox and sent to the spam folder. 

While this second method prevents you from having to open any unwanted emails, it does mean that only the emails you have selected will be reported as spam. You will still receive emails from that sender. 

How do I block emails on Gmail on my iPhone?

Blocking emails in Gmail using your iPhone is a very similar process to doing it through desktop. 

Follow these steps: 

  1. Open the Gmail app on your iPhone.

  2. Open an email from the sender you would like to block.

  3. Click the three dots icon on the top right of the message. 

  4. Click the block option. 

  5. Click confirm to block the sender.

How do I unsubscribe from an email address in Gmail? 

Sometimes, you might receive an email newsletter from an organization you signed up to but no longer want to hear from. In this case, you’ll prefer to unsubscribe from this unwanted sender rather than blocking them completely. 

Follow these steps: 

  1. Make sure you are logged into Gmail. 

  2. Open the email you want to unsubscribe from. 

  3. Next to their email address will be an Unsubscribe link. 

  4. Click the link and click Unsubscribe in the dialog that opens. 

Using this method has the advantage of unsubscribing from mass emails from particular senders rather than blocking their email address completely. 

Often organizations allow you to click links in the body of their emails to unsubscribe, but these links are often hard to find. Gmail makes the process easier. 

Does Gmail block certain email addresses?

Gmail does automatically block certain email addresses and email content from reaching your inbox, in addition to giving you the ability to manually block unwanted mail. Gmail’s anti-spam filter uses natural language processing (NLP) to analyze the content of emails arriving in your inbox, as well as using machine learning to identify spam senders. 

Gmail also looks at suspicious activity from particular emails or IP addresses, such as sending out lots of emails in a given time frame, to target senders to block. This means you often don’t have to do anything to block harmful or unfriendly emails. Simply check your spam folders to get an idea of all the emails that haven’t made it through Gmail’s spam detection. 

If you want to move an email categorized as spam to your inbox, go to your spam folder and right-click the email. Select Not spam from the dropdown to move your email to the inbox. 

How do I view my blocked emails in Gmail? 

You have a choice either to view your blocked emails or blocked email addresses. Usually, blocked emails are sent to your spam folder, the contents of which are deleted by Google after 30 days. So if you want to check your spam folder, remember that old messages will have been removed. 

Follow these steps to view blocked email: 

  1. Make sure you are logged into Gmail. 

  2. On the left-hand side, open your spam folder from the menu (you might have to click More). 

  3. In the spam folder, you will see any blocked emails from the last 30 days. 

If you want to view your blocked email addresses, follow these steps: 

  1. Make sure you are logged into Gmail. 

  2. Click the gear icon on the top right-hand corner. 

  3. Click See all settings in the drop-down that opens. 

  4. In the current pane, navigate to Filters and Blocked Addresses. 

  5. In the pane that opens, you’ll see a list of blocked email addresses. 

  6. To unblock any email address, click Unblock on the right-hand side next to the address. 

Why can’t I block someone on Gmail?

If you don’t have a message from someone then you can’t block them in Gmail. Blocking can only take place from a specific email in your inbox. However, if you want to, you can set up a filter that automatically sends any future messages from an email address to the trash. This works just as well as sending it to spam. 

Follow these steps: 

  1. Make sure you are logged into Gmail. 

  2. In the search bar, click the icon to the right that looks like three lines. 

  3. In the dropdown that opens, enter your unwanted email address in the From field. 

  4. Click Create filter. 

  5. In the dropdown that opens, select Delete it. 

  6. Then select Create filter again. 

This means that any new emails you receive from that sender will be sent to trash. 

Can you block someone on Gmail without them knowing?

You can definitely block someone on Gmail without them knowing. When you block an email address or report an email as spam, the sender is not notified. Blocking an email means that Gmail updates its settings so you no longer receive email from them to your main inbox.

So that means even if you block your uncle who is sending you crass emails every week, he won’t have a clue. 

What happens when you block someone on Gmail?

When you block someone on Gmail, all that happens is that their email address is added to Gmail’s list of blocked emails for your account. If they email you again, any future incoming email is sent to the spam folder, and the contents of this folder are deleted after 30 days. 

If a sender is reported as spam, Gmail will update its anti-spam detection to take this report into account. This makes Gmail safer for everyone because reporting a sender as spam makes it harder for their emails to get through Gmail’s filters in the future. 

How do I report spam and phishing? 

If a spam or phishing attack does make it through to your inbox, not only do you want to block the sender but also report the email to Gmail. This means Gmail is more aware of potential threats and they can also protect other users from receiving the same emails. 

Follow these steps: 

  1. Open the unwanted email within Gmail. 

  2. Click on the three dots and click either “Report spam” or “Report phishing”, depending on the nature of the email. 

  3. You will need to click a confirmation box in the dialog box at opens. 

Reporting malicious emails helps keep Gmail safer for everyone in general. 

How do I keep my Gmail account secure? 

Google comes built in with several features to keep your Gmail account secure, such as automatic virus and spam detection to help you filter unwanted emails. However, there are a few things you can do to keep your email account even more secure. 

  • If you receive a suspicious email, report the email to Gmail without opening it by selecting the checkbox on the left-hand side and clicking the icon that looks like an octagon with an exclamation point inside. This will report the email as spam to Gmail and remove it from your inbox. 

  • Ensure that the software you are using is updated to the latest version. Updates come with security patches that protect you from threats that are not covered in previous versions. Malicious parties are always changing their tactics which is why it is important to keep updated. 

  • Be wary of opening suspicious attachments or clicking on suspicious links that may contain viruses. If you’re not sure about a sender, always err on the side of caution. 

  • Be careful who you share your email address with. Some organizations sell your data on to third-parties who might not be particularly scrupulous about what they do with it. Try to avoid giving out your details if at all possible. 

Although you can encrypt emails in Gmail, email is still vulnerable to security breaches just like any other form of communication. 

Wrapping up

Keeping your Gmail inbox clean is an important part of email management. Gmail makes this easy by allowing you to block unwanted senders and also automatically screening your incoming emails for suspicious activity. Although you can take steps to keep your email secure, sometimes spam emails do make it through to the inbox. 

For customer service teams in particular, high volumes of emails mean that it’s extra important to filter out the ones you don’t want to receive. You also want to avoid compromising customer data by clicking on suspicious emails. 

So follow the steps to block unwanted senders and you’ll dramatically reduce the amount of spam or even simply irrelevant emails you receive. Gmail becomes a much more useful tool to communicate with those who are important to you. 

catherine heath

Catherine is a content writer and community builder for creative and ethical companies. She often writes case studies, help documentation and articles about customer support. Her writing has helped businesses to attract curious audiences and transform them into loyal advocates. You can find more of her work at

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