How to Automatically Delete Spam Emails In Gmail

How to Automatically Delete Spam Emails in Gmail

Do you want to delete spam emails automatically without even reading or opening? Don’t worry using a Gmail filter you can automatically delete spam emails from Gmail inbox. Read along to know more. 

Gmail is unarguably one of the most used email service providers in the world. Many people use it for personal use as well as to run their businesses. It allows customizations and being free to use; it remains the most popular email service provider within the users.

How to Automatically Delete Spam Emails in Gmail

Either you subscribed to some janky subscription that is used to cater personalized advertisements for money, or your Mail ID data was sold by some service to create mailing lists for funky newsletters and other emails. Both ways or even a few other things may lead you to receive some emails in your Gmail inbox that you do not want. These are Spam mails. Spam emails can contain misleading information, click baits to fool you into losing money or even some viruses that can attack the system you are using the Mail Service on. Spam mails are pretty much automatically identified by most of the Mail Service providers, and they do not appear in your inbox unless you mark them as not spam. They are automatically moved into the Spam folder.

One thing you might want, if you are a Gmail user either on the web or on your mobile phone, is to get rid of the annoying spam emails that you keep receiving. Even though the spam filters by Google are good enough, you still have to go in the spam folder manually to get rid of the spam mails you have received. Gmail, by default, deletes spam mail after they have been in the spam folder for more than 30 days. But in the meanwhile, they use up your precious space and sometimes while checking spam mails you might end up opening some of them which is not recommended. To get rid of all that mess, you can create custom filters for Gmail to automatically delete all the spam mail. How? Let’s find out.

How to Automatically Delete Spam Emails in Gmail

Here is one of the easiest methods to get rid of the annoying spam emails from your Gmail account. Just follow the below step-by-step approach to do so:

1. Open Gmail on your favorite browser and log into your Gmail account with the username and password. If you have enabled the two-step verification for your account, enter the one-time Password received via call/SMS or click on the notification on your phone to confirm the login.

Open your web browser, visit gmail.com and then login to your Gmail account

2. Click on the Gear-like symbol located near the upper right corner of the mail list.

Click on the Gear-like symbol from Gmail web client

3. Once the menu opens, click on the Settings option, generally located above the Theme option in the latest version of Gmail Web Client for most modern browsers.

Click on the gear icon then select Settings under Gmail

4. On the Settings page, switch to the Filters and Blocked Addresses tab. It will be the fifth tab from the left, located near the center of the window.

Switch to Filters and Blocked Addresses tab under Gmail settings

5. Click on Create a New Filter option. A popup box with the search criteria will open.

Click on Create a New Filter option

6. In the “Has the words” field, put “is:spam” without the quotes. Doing so will create a filter for all the emails that have been labeled as spam by Google’s Spam Algorithm. The is: keyword is used here to specify the folder that the conversation will be found in. You can use in: trash for selecting the mail in the trash folder and so on.

In the Has the words field, put “in spam” without the quotes

7. Once you click on the Create Filter button, the filter to select spam emails from your Gmail account is set. It will be applied to all the spam emails. Now to choose the action of deleting when a particular email has been classified as spam, checkmark Delete it option from the list. You can also choose to automatically archive the spam emails, by checking the first option that says Skip the Inbox (Archive it). The options include Mark as Read, Star it, Always mark it as important among others that you can use for creating more such filters for other use cases.

Also checkmark Apply the filter to X matching conversations

Also Read: Logout of Gmail or Google Account Automatically (With Pictures)

8. If you wish to delete the existing spam emails along with the new incoming ones, you need to checkmark Also apply the filter to X matching conversations option. Here, X denotes the number of conversations or emails already in your inbox that match the criteria.

9. Click on the Create Filter button to create the filter. Now every email that has been marked as spam by the Google Algorithm or mails that you have previously marked as spam will be automatically deleted.

Checkmark Delete it option then click on Create Filter

Using Gmail is quite simple, but with the customizations it offers and the tweaks you can do to make the best use of Gmail, it is not a surprise why it is the most used email service worldwide. Not only the UI is clean and elegant, the options to create various filters and assign actions that you want to each one of the filters and much more make it intuitive and user-friendly.

I hope using the above method you will be able to automatically delete spam emails in Gmail. But if you still have any queries regarding this tutorial feel free to ask in the comment section.

Posted by
Elon Decker

Elon is a tech writer at TechCult. He's been writing how-to guides for about 6 years now and has covered many topics. He loves to cover topics related to Windows, Android, and the latest tricks and tips.

36 Comments

  1. This did not work for me. I created the filter but it is not deleting my spam folder. Any follow up tips? Thanks!

    1. Same thing here. This seems like a pretty simple algorithm for Google techs to write so why isn’t it being done?

    2. It doesn’t delete the folder – just moves the contents to your trash or archive. Waste of time – use Protonmail

      1. Been with protonmail since it opened. Most secure email for free. Yup.

    3. It might be because the instructions were wrong; it said ” is: spam” in the text. But in the image it showed ” in: spam ” ; I’m going to try the “in:” keyword and see if that works.

  2. Its useless – the emails are still there, you’ve just moved them in your account.
    Google is horrific and was hacked around Christmas – that’s why the sudden increase in spam.
    @Brandon – i doesn’t delete the folder – just moves the email to trash. OMG????

  3. I have the same issues. Lots of SPAM, and I dont need them moved from SPAM folder to Trash folder. I want to delete them all toghether.

  4. Useless.
    Should have a feature/function for “Spam E-mails” to automatically delete forever. Putting the E-mails in trash folder and then requiring a “Delete Action” adds no value

  5. I built the filter – thanks for showing me how to move files from the Junk Folder to the Trash Folder. I recommend you rename the article to “How to Automatically Move Spam Emails In Gmail”. I think everyone arrive at this page (also full of SPAM btw) trying to not see all the junk email.

  6. The in: spam procedure worked for me so nothing more in spam. Bad news is the in: trash does not work so the spam is just going to the trash file. It is some pretty nasty spam that I don’t ever want to see. Any thoughts on how to get the trash to automatically delete upon arrival?

    1. I am having the same issue as you. Did you figure out how to get the spam emails deleted automatically forever so that it doesn’t show up in trash either ?

  7. The glaring omission by Gmail is in not supplying the filter option to “permanently delete” as opposed to the (misleading) “delete” which is actually only going to park it in “trash”

  8. In the “Has the words” field, put “in: spam” without the quotes. This why the spam emails aren’t deleted permanently and going into the trash. Instead put is:spam in the has the words field. Then it works well.

    1. Nah do NOT make up silly lies Tom.

    2. Tom it DOESNT work well literally at all lmao.
      Ive tried it a dozen times WITHOUT the quotes and get this every time…

      “Filter searches containing “label:”, “in:”, “is:”, date range (e.g. “before:” or “after:”) or stars criteria (e.g. “has:yellow-star”) are not recommended as they will never match incoming mail. Do you still wish to continue to the next step?”

  9. Not Working, wrong input. Has the words should be is:spam not in:spam. Working good now.

  10. Gmail desperately needs a “block” filter function in addition to the “delete”. Something that would just keep the email from entering my system at all. I’m currently experimenting with Microsoft’s email which does have such a filter, but it’s user interface really is user hostile, IMHO.

  11. It doesn’t work.
    It doesn’t delete instantly spam messages.
    It just move them from the spam folder to the trash folder.
    Totally useless!

  12. Please Google – fix this problem. You must build the ability to 100% block unwanted SPAM e-mail.

  13. Fix the problem Google

  14. I use gmail and want something that automatically deletes spam. I don’t want it for 30 days!

  15. I send feedback everyday to Google.
    A kind friend has helped me get Spam redirected to Trash, but I’m begging Google to Permanently Delete anything identified as spam without sending. Why isn’t this possible?

  16. We readers need someone who isn’t enthralled with Gmail to write an article like this. Set up the account-go through the process-establish contacts-send emails with profanity to account-create the filter-use the filter-send new profane emails. This is how you know the process one explains actually works.
    Also, please don’t share things that used to work a decade ago.

  17. I empty my gmail trash folder daily. I prefer that the spam be deleted and put in my trash folder as occasionally some legitimate email gets directed to spam. When emptying the trash folder I can readily identify legitimate email and move to my inbox. If spam is permanently deleted, I could not recapture email accidentally marked as spam.

  18. My Gmail account used to get very little spam. That is why I switched from Yahoo. But now the spam on my Gmail is out of control.

  19. The in: spam procedure worked for me so nothing more in spam. Bad news is the in: trash does not work so the spam is just going to the trash file. It is some pretty nasty spam that I don’t ever want to see. Any thoughts on how to get spam auto deleted without going to trash folder?

  20. Have tried your suggestion but gmail sends back
    “Filter searches containing “label:”, “in:”, “is:”, date range (e.g. “before:” or “after:”) or stars criteria (e.g. “has:yellow-star”) are not recommended as they will never match incoming mail. Do you still wish to continue to the next step?”

  21. lmao.
    not only doesnt work…but tells me ‘is’ and ‘in’ arent allowed and will never ever in a million years do anything…or something to that effect.
    did google change something after this article was written?

  22. Google wants us (and our children) to be bombarded with P*rn*graphy, Phishing, Scams, etc.
    They refuse to block these types of emails. They refuse to add an “automatically delete forever” filter. They refuse to address the issue at all. 2022 is supposed to introduce new laws against Email Providers that will hold them accountable. I created a Filter to forward all my spam to Google Executive emails. Hope they are as annoyed as I am.

    1. That wont work you have to go into the other email to verify it. I tried to rend them back to sender.

  23. Avatar photo Alan Thomas Richard Mann

    If only there was a way to forward the spam to Google.
    I bet they would fix it then 🙂

  24. Elon Decker is the author of this article?? Why doesn’t he address all these queries? Or just say “we do not have a delete for spam, sorry”

  25. So what is the correct way to enter multiple words? Would that look like:”squirrel (space) chipmunk” or “squirrel; (space) chipmunk”. Aka are individual terms separated by a space or a semi colon…or another way…commas? Thanks.

    And no, squirrel and chipmunk are not my problem terms, haha.

  26. Comcast has a check box in settings to only accept emails in your contact list. All spam gets cut out and you never see them. The only problem is if you give someone your email address and they are not put in your contacts, it will not show up in your inbox, it will not show up anywhere in your mail.

  27. I’m totally with Jack on this Spam issue. Maybe, the Spammers are paying Google/Gmail… like lobbyist payoff the Powers that be.

  28. Jack is 100% correct, Comcast has this switch on their mail program and it works. If you are not in the email list, it doesn’t show up anywhere. It is doable and Gmail should make that an option, solves so many problems with spam and phishing.

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