What Does it Mean If an Email Address Is Blacklisted?

By Luke Arthur

When using email, you can have some say over who gets to send you messages. To cut down on spam, email providers add certain email servers to a blacklist. If you are on a blacklist, it means that your email messages will not be delivered to other email inboxes when you send them.

What Is Blacklist?

A blacklist is a list of email addresses or domains that are prevented from sending messages to email users. A blacklist can be created by an email provider or by an email user. When an email address is added to this list, any messages that are sent by it will be disregarded. The email will not be delivered to the inbox and it will be deleted. In some cases, the email is bounced back to the sender and the sender is given a message that the email was not delivered.

Purpose of Blacklist

The purpose of a blacklist is to cut down on the amount of spam that runs rampant on the Internet. Many product sellers use spam as a way to market their products to very large numbers of people. For example, they will get large databases of millions of email addresses and then send out a mass message to all of them. If they can even get a small percentage of sales off this list, it can be very lucrative. The blacklisting process aims to protect consumers from these mass email blasts.

Mistaken Blacklisting

In some cases, regular e-mail users can have their email addresses blacklisted by mistake. This often happens when spammers hack into their email account and use it to send mass emails. When this happens, the Internet service provider might blacklist that particular email address. When your email address is blacklisted, you will have to contact the entity that blacklisted your email to get it removed. This can be time consuming, but if you want to be able to send emails, it is the only way to get around it.

Personal Email Settings

If you wish to block certain messages from reaching your own individual email inbox, you can also take the proper measures to make this happen. In your email options, you should be able to add certain domains to a personal blacklist. If you are not receiving emails from a sender, you can also add the domain to a safe list. To make this work, go into your email options and add the email address or the domain to the white list or safe list.