Spam Traps

What are Spam Traps and how to avoid them.

Spam Traps are email addresses that are not owned or operated by actual recipients. They are operated by Inbox Providers and 3rd party operators that report to, or are referenced by Inbox Providers.

Sending to Spam Traps can land your domain or IPs on a blocklist. Being on a blocklist means that some inboxes will reject your emails.​

Spam Traps are designed to highlight recipient hygiene and acquisition issues.

Some common spam trap networks are SpamHaus, Abusix and Microsoft's SNDS.

There are multiple types of spam traps that can be prevented by following email best practices.


Email addresses set up for the sole purpose of being monitored as spam traps.​​ Found on public websites and purchased lists.


Email addresses that used to belong to an actual recipient, but have been repurposed to be a spam trap.​​ Often abandoned inboxes or domains.


Email addresses set up with common typos, such as "", "", "gmail.con", "", etc.​

How to Avoid Spam Traps

Note: List cleaning tools will not remove spam traps.​

Prevent Spam Traps

​Implement a "Confirmed" or "Double" Opt-in. When a new contact gives you their email address via a form on your website or elsewhere, you send them an immediate email that requires them to confirm:​

A. That the email address is valid.
B. That the email address is actually operated by the recipient.​

Learn how to implement a double opt-in using OneSignal's Magic Link

Remove Spam Traps

​Remove unengaged email recipient addresses. Spam Traps don't bounce back as invalid, but don't engage with your mail either. If a recipient has received multiple emails without clicking or even opening the email, then it would be a good idea to remove them from your lists.​

Try sending your next emails with Journeys so that you can tag unengaged recipients based on [Previous Message Behavior](​)

Similarly to a Confirmed opt-in email, consider sending older recipients a pulse check email that they are required to interact with or they get removed from your sending lists.​ Then use a Retargeting Message on the engaged recipients.