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What is a whitelist?

Countless emails are sent and received daily. In such scenarios, spam filters play an essential role in keeping inboxes manageable and free from potentially harmful content. However, these filters can sometimes be overzealous and may mistakenly classify legitimate emails as spam. This is where whitelisting comes into play.

A whitelist, is essentially an “approved” or “safe” list. In email marketing, when an email address or an entire domain is whitelisted, it’s given a VIP pass to bypass spam filters and land directly in the recipient’s main inbox.

What is the purpose of a whitelist?

The purpose of a whitelist is to allow only certain email addresses to send messages to a recipient’s inbox. This is in contrast to a blacklist, which blocks certain email addresses from sending messages and connecting with the recipients.

A whitelist ensure that only emails from approved senders reach the recipient’s inbox. This can be helpful for organizations that want to ensure that their employees only receive messages from approved senders, or for individuals who want to ensure that they only receive messages from approved senders.

A whitelist can also be used to prevent spam from reaching the recipient’s inbox. By adding known spammy email addresses to the blacklist, the recipient’s inbox will be protected from messages from those senders.

How do you add someone to a whitelist?

  1. Open Your Email Client or Service: Access the platform where you receive your emails.
  2. Navigate to Settings: Usually, there will be a settings, options, or preferences menu in your email client.
  3. Find Filtering Options: Within the settings, look for a section that might be labeled as “filters,” “whitelists,” “safe senders,” “trusted senders,” or something similar.
  4. Add to Whitelist: There should be an option to add an email address or domain to the whitelist. Enter the desired email address or domain.
  5. Save Changes: Always make sure to save or apply any changes so that the addition takes effect.

How do you remove someone from a whitelist?

Removing someone from a whitelist is easy – all you have to do is delete their email address from the list. However, if you’re not sure how to do that, or if you’re not sure how to add someone to a whitelist, then here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Open your email client and click on the “Tools” or “Settings” menu.
  2. Look for a section that deals with “filters,” “whitelists,” “safe senders,” or “trusted senders.”
  3. Find the email address or domain you want to remove.
  4. There should be an option to delete or remove that entry. Click on it.

What happens if someone is not on a whitelist?

Whitelists are a list of email addresses that are allowed to receive emails from a specific sender. This is used as a way to prevent spam from being sent to people’s inboxes.

If someone is not on the whitelist, they will not receive the email unless they whitelist the sender’s email address.

Can a whitelist be used for other purposes?

Whitelisting is a term used in email marketing to describe the act of specifically allowing certain email addresses or domains to bypass the spam filters and deliver email messages to the intended recipient’s inbox.

Whitelists play a role in email-based authentication systems. They can be paired with technologies like DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance) to validate that incoming emails are genuinely from the domains they claim to be from, adding an extra layer of security against phishing attempts. Additionally, in customer support scenarios, whitelisting can ensure that feedback or support requests from key clients are promptly addressed, improving client relationships and retention.

Whitelisting can also be used to allow specific types of messages, such as those containing images or attachments, to bypass the spam filters from blocking the communication.

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