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Lion Mail: Change the junk mail filter

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Change the junk mail filter

Mail provides a junk mail filter that automatically identifies and handles junk mail. The filter’s default settings catch most of the junk messages you receive, but you can customize it as needed.

  1. Choose Mail > Preferences, and then click Junk Mail.
  2. Specify which actions Mail should perform when junk mail arrives.
    • When you want to verify what Mail is identifying as junk mail, select the “Mark as junk mail, but leave it in my Inbox” checkbox.

    • When you are sure the filter is accurately identifying junk mail, select the “Move it to the Junk mailbox” checkbox.

    • To set up other actions, select the “Perform custom actions” checkbox, and then click the Advanced button. In the pane that appears, click Add (+) to add conditions and actions. To remove a condition or action, click Remove (-).

      Note: To use the junk mail database when identifying junk mail, make sure “Message is Junk Mail” is one of the conditions (it’s specified by default). Otherwise, Mail uses only the conditions listed to identify junk mail.
  3. In the Junk Mail pane, indicate the types of messages that don’t need to be evaluated by the junk mail filter.

    Typically, these are messages from senders you know.

  4. To include in the filter any junk mail detection that may already be present in messages, select “Trust junk mail headers in messages.”

Mail maintains an internal database of information that helps it detect junk mail. When you mark messages as junk or not junk, Mail updates the junk mail database accordingly and your junk mail filter continually improves over time. If you change your mind about what is junk mail (for example, you want to receive someone’s messages that you previously specified were junk messages), you need to mark them as not junk.

Mark messages as junk or not junk

Mail continues to update its junk mail database when you mark messages as junk or not junk, regardless of whether you’re currently using the database in your filter. To reset the junk mail database to its original information and remove everything Mail learned from you about what is junk or not junk, click Reset.

Last Modified: Oct 30, 2013
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  • Last Modified: Oct 30, 2013
  • Article: PH4868
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