I'm using google apps for email, and my primary accound is also the catch-all email address.

Now, there are a number of email addresses that seem to attract a lot of spam - is there any way to exclude them, so that the sender gets an error?

The google spam filter picks up almost all of these, but I'm wondering if this is possible.


Catchalls in mail domains today are somewhat brave. In addition to all the mail coming in to fake addresses, you then have the spam harvesters who can't tell a message-id from an email address, etc, and all those mails can come in too.

Honestly, it's better to use:

  1. Aliases, set up in the accounts page, you can create lots of aliases
  2. Variant address forms. Gmail supports user+subaddress@example.org addresses, and also canonicalises away dots, so that foobar@example.org == foo.bar@example.org == fo.ob.ar@example.org
  3. Addresses with a reasonable length left-hand-side. Much as it pains me, as a three-letter initial sort of person, there's a reason Google don't allow such short addresses in @gmail.com; they really do receive a lot more spam from just random dictionary probes.

If you try excluding some addresses by filtering them aside then you just end up with more and more complex filters, which are a pain to keep up-to-date and if you're not careful might catch too much.

  • This is not an answer to the question but an completely different way of handling the situation! – jorijnsmit Nov 18 '14 at 8:29

You would have to get your users to create a filter (in settings -> filters) to delete messages as they come in from certain addresses, i would also recommend that you mark them as read so it doesnt show you as having un-read messages in your trash box


It is not possible to block them like you want to, however it is possible to use the filter feature and send some e-mails directly into the trash where they'll get deleted from automatically after a few days.

Another option may be moving the catchall e-mail address to some other mailbox or removing it altogether.

  • Filters don't work on messages marked as spam. – chris Dec 10 '09 at 12:53
  • Well, if they're in the spam box then you shouldn't worry about them, as they'll be deleted as time goes by. – gekkz Dec 10 '09 at 13:56

Create another user in your domain, I named mine "Spam Aliases". Give it all the aliases you consider "tainted" mailboxes. Never log in.

The only thing I am still figuring out is how to actually make the emails bounce... I was thinking about giving "Mr. Spam Aliases" a quota or disabling his Gmail app altogether but I can't find the settings am looking for in the admin console...


I realize this is a very old question, but here's some advice for anyone else Googling this. What I was able to do years ago within Google Apps was create a group with the name that you want to have the email bounce. For example, if you want to have emails bounce that are addressed to user@domain.com, create a group called "user". Under roles and permissions of that user, set the access level to Restricted - only members can post messages". If someone sends an email to that email address, they will receive a delivery status notification (failure) stating that the group you tried to contact (user) may not exist or you may not have permission to post messages to the group.

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