Unsubscribing From Spam Only Makes It Worse

Unsubscribing From Spam Only Makes It Worse

The last time I checked my spam folder, I noticed a few messages included an unsubscribe link. Well that’s nice, I thought. Maybe spammers realise that some people will never respond, so they want to trim their lists for efficiency. I clicked “unsubscribe”. That was a mistake.

While “legit companies” honour unsubscribe requests, says the McAfee Labs blog, “shady” ones just use the unsubscribe buttons to confirm your address and send you more spam. Sophos blogger Alan Zeichick says that clicking unsubscribe tells the spammer you opened their email, possibly because you were interested or suspected it was real. By visiting the spammer’s fake unsubscribe page, you’re giving them your browser info and IP address, and even opening yourself up to malware attacks.

If an email looks like truly shady spam (and not just a newsletter you’re sick of reading), don’t click any links. Just mark it as spam and move on.


  • This is one area where Gmail excels. Every time I get a new spam, I immediately create a filter, so as soon as a new one comes in, it just gets deleted. Of course, that doesn’t mean you won’t get more spam from the same place because they just keep adjusting their address so it comes through as new spam. I just create a new filter each time until they’ve run out of adjustments. Pedantic I know, but I hate Spam.

  • That’s why you need to use tools like MailWasher to bounce spam emails. That way, the spammers think that your email address is invalid and stop sending stuff.

  • I don’t know when I subscribe to email but I am receiving emails in bulk, so I decided to unsubscribe the but still I am receiving emails and not the quantity has increased. Don’t know what to do? Gmail should introduce a feature to blocks these spam mails.

Show more comments

Comments are closed.

Log in to comment on this story!