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Blocking a sender

Thunderbird does not have an option for blocking email messages from specific people or domains. However, you can use message filters to automatically dispose of unwanted messages.

Message filters operate on a per-account basis, so when you set up the filter you must configure it to act on the correct account. The easiest way to do this is:

  • Select a message from a sender you wish to block: Right-clickPress and hold the Ctrl key, click on the sender's address and choose Create Filter From....

    block sender

  • This will open the Filter rules window with the email address already inserted into the filter.
    1. Name the filter. Something like "Block list" would be appropriate.
    2. In the bottom half of the window, change the action to perform to Delete Message.

      filter rule

  • Click OK to save the filter. The next time that person sends you mail, it will automatically be deleted.

The Message filter that you have created can be opened and edited by selecting the Message filters... entry in the Tools menu. It is not necessary to create an individual filter for each address you want to block. Now you have the Block list filter, the next time you want to block someone you can add the person's address into the top of the filter by clicking the + button and thus creating a new field to enter the new address. Make sure you select the "Match any of the following" option, as you wish it to fire on any of the listed addresses.

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Renaming this article and other Thunderbird articles is being discussed in /forums/knowledge-base-articles/711125

P.S. A suggestion was made in the above thread to rename this article from "Blocking a sender" to Block someone from sending emails to you. I looked at the article and, since it involves Thunderbird and message filters, I think a better title would be: Create message filters for Thunderbird to block unwanted emails

This article is planned to be archived. We’ve been going through Thunderbird articles to determine which ones are still needed. If you disagree with archiving this article, it’s best to post in this thread in the KB forum.

For the time being, I've decided not to archive this one, and added it to the article map as a sub-topic of Organize Your Messages by Using Filters. Theoretically, the parent article covers this, but this is a popular question, and that article is much harder to read if you want to block someone.