How to manage spam in Microsoft Outlook
By default, the junk email filter is turned on and the protection level is set to No Automatic Filtering. You can make the filter more aggressive by changing the level of protection that it provides. The Junk Email Filter evaluates each incoming message based on several factors. These can include the time when the message was sent and the content of the message.
To change the options for the junk email filter, do the following:
Click Home > Junk > Junk Email Options.
How to block a sender in Outlook
On the Blocked Senders tab, you can see email addresses that are already blocked, add more senders to the list or unblock a particular sender. All messages from blocked senders are considered spam and automatically moved to the junk folder.
To block a sender, go to Junk Email Options.
Click on Blocked Senders > click the Add button > type an e-mail address or domain name in the pop-up dialog box.
To remove someone from junk, select it in the Blocked Senders list and click the Remove button.
Another quick way to block a specific sender is to right-click the message and choose Junk > Block Sender from the menu.
How to mark an email as not junk in Outlook
Sometimes, a legitimate email can mistakenly go into your junk folder. If this happens, you can mark it as not junk:
Right click the message > click Not Junk.
From the menu, choose either: Never Block Sender, Never Block Sender’s Domain or Not Junk.
Clicking Never Block Sender or Never Block Sender’s Domain will add the sender’s address or domain name to your Safe Senders list, so the Outlook spam filter won’t make the same mistake again.
Choosing Not Junk will move the message from the Junk folder to your Inbox. Additionally, you can select the Always trust e-mail from… option to add that email address to the Safe Senders list.
Useful to know: junk email filter lists
While the junk email filter checks your incoming messages automatically, junk email filter Lists let you control what is considered spam. You can add names, email addresses and domains to these lists so the filter doesn’t check messages from sources you trust, or blocks messages that arrive from specific email addresses and domains you don’t know or trust.
- Safe Senders list: Email addresses and domain names in the Safe Senders List are never treated as junk email, regardless of the content of the message. You can add your Contacts and other correspondents to this list. However, by design, safe domains are not recognised by default in Exchange Online or in Exchange Online Protection. Only blocked domains, blocked sender addresses, and safe sender addresses are recognised.
- Safe Recipients list: If you belong to a mailing list or a distribution list, you can add the list sender to the Safe Recipients List. Messages sent to these email addresses or domain names are never treated as junk, regardless of the content of the message.
- Blocked Senders list: You can easily block messages from particular senders by adding their email addresses or domain names to the Blocked Senders List. When you add a name or email address to this list, Outlook moves any incoming message from that source to the Junk Email folder. Messages from people or domain names that appear in this list are always classified as junk, regardless of the content of the message.
Getting emails out of quarantine
Each day, you’ll get a quarantine email from Microsoft. There is a difference between a quarantined email and one that is a spam. Many emails that are sent en-masse, e.g., marketing emails, often end up in the spam folder, as well as those from unknown senders. With quarantined emails, you can still access them and decide whether you’d like them to be redelivered to your inbox again.
First, open up your quarantine email. Once you’ve located the email and/or sender, you’ll be given two options: Release to Inbox and Report as Not Junk.
Releasing to your inbox will be a one-time redelivery of that email to your inbox – it will only affect that specific email. Report as Not Junk, you would think (in theory), would allow all emails from that sender to be redelivered to your inbox, but that’s not the case. To allow all emails, you’ll need to add the sender to a Safe Sender list, or “whitelist” it.
How to whitelist a sender
Click Home, Junk and then Junk Email Options.
Go to Safe Senders List.
Click Add. Then, either type in the email address, or you can add a domain e.g., @example.com.
Deleting emails from your quarantined emails
The good thing with Windows Defender and quarantined emails, is that you don’t need to think about deleting emails – that’s all taken care of with your retention policy. Depending on what your retention policy is set to (typically 30 days), the item will auto-delete from quarantine without any user input.