Mail (Yosemite): Reduce junk mail in your inbox

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As Mail learns about your junk mail, it automatically moves the messages to your email account’s Junk mailbox, available in the Mail sidebar. You can set a preference that determines when to delete messages from the Junk mailbox.

Mark messages as junk or not junk

If Mail incorrectly marks a message as junk: Click Not Junk in the banner, or click the Not Junk button in the Mail toolbar.

If Mail fails to mark a message as junk: Select the message, then click the Junk button in the Mail toolbar.

Change the junk mail filter

The default settings in Mail’s junk mail filter catch most of the junk messages you receive, but you can customize the filter.

  1. Choose Mail > Preferences, then click Junk Mail.

  2. Specify what Mail should do when junk mail arrives.

    • To verify what Mail identifies as junk mail, select “Mark as junk mail, but leave it in my Inbox.”

    • If you’re sure the filter accurately identifies junk mail, select “Move it to the Junk mailbox.”

    • To set up other actions, select “Perform custom actions,” then click Advanced.

      Note: To make sure the junk mail database is used to identify junk mail, don’t change the default condition “Message is Junk Mail.”
  3. In the Junk Mail pane, select options for exempting messages from evaluation, such as messages received from people who use your full name.

  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 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 as junk mail), you need to mark them as not junk.

To reset the junk mail database to its original state and remove everything Mail learned from you about what is or isn’t junk, click Reset at the bottom of the Junk Mail pane in Mail preferences.

Published Date: Sep 15, 2017