Ignoring junk email is your best option

Unsubscribing or any other interaction will only keep you on a spammer’s list.

This week a reader writes that she’s been getting 25 or more spam emails a day that end up in the junk folder of her AOL email account.

She uses an iPhone 8 for her email. The same people keep sending the messages, she says, but she’s happy they end up in the junk folder.

Her question is how to stop or block them without opening them, since she knows you shouldn’t open spam emails. She said she knows how to block calls on her phone, but not emails that end up in the junk folder.

My initial advice is to not spend much time worrying about email messages in your junk email folder. They’ll stay in the junk folder for a month, then they’ll be deleted.

If your email provider’s spam filtering is working, count your blessings and spend your time worrying about other things.

I understand some people are bothered by spam, even if it is filtered out of their inbox. For these people, just knowing there is spam taking up phone space can be maddening.

If you only do email on your phone (meaning you don’t have a computer), then you can use your iPhone to block email senders. Touch and hold your finger on the message until you see a pop-up menu. At the bottom of the pop-up menu, you can choose to block the sender.

Be aware, spammers tend to frequently change the accounts they use to get around these types of blocks. You’re likely just chasing your tail.

What can you do to minimize spam?

Don’t waste your time trying to click “unsubscribe” links in these messages. Giving the spammers any kind of feedback will just keep you on their lists.

Just ignore them.

If the messages in your junk folder are really bothering you, feel free to wipe them out whenever you feel like it. You can delete all junk messages at once, without opening them, by opening the junk folder, selecting “Edit” from the upper right, then “Select All” from the upper left and then selecting “Delete” from the lower right.

If any spam message makes it into your inbox, press and hold your finger on the message, then choose “Mark” and then “Move to Junk” from the pop-up menu.

Jim Rossman is a tech columnist for Tribune News Service. He may be reached at

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