Spam traps

No BS about SPAM traps. What are they? How to avoid them? Can they be identified by email verifiers?
Updated on:
February 1, 2018

What are SPAM traps?

Internet Service Providers use spam traps to easily identify spammers. These are specific email addresses that shouldn’t receive any bulk email communication. Sending emails to spam traps can damage your campaign and email reputation.

There are 2 types of spam traps:

  1. Recycled spam trap: Abandoned email addresses that haven’t been used for a long time. If you email these addresses, it shows that you are still emailing contacts who didn’t open your last emails, which indicates you are not following best subscriber management practices.
  2. Pristine spam trap, “honey pots”: These are email addresses displayed on some websites, but they have never been used to subscribe on any email lists. If you email a honey pot email address, it clearly shows ISP’s that your list contains email addresses that did not specifically request to receive mail from you, therefore your email is a as spam.

How to avoid spam traps?

  1. Send emails to opt-in subscribers only. If you send emails to real subscribers you will never have a honey pot on your list.
  2. Never rent, purchase a list, or collect email addresses from the internet for bulk email sending. It is illegal in most countries, and when you send out your email list, you will be caught anyway.
  3. Monitor subscribers’ activity and remove inactive subscribers. Follow best subscriber management practices, keep emailing your email lists regularly and remove subscribers who never interact (open, click a link, reply) with your email.

Follow these 3 septs above and you will never have to think about spam traps any more.

Can SPAM traps be removed by email verifiers?

No, spam traps are one of the highest value assets for Internet Service Providers. They will never publish, share, leak or sell the list of their spam traps. If they did, it will not be used for performance tracking any more.

Do you believe in fairy tales?

If you do, that’s fine. But be aware, if an email verifier offers you to remove spam traps from your email lists, they are misleading you. Gmail, Outlook, Hotmail, and any other ISP’s are fighting against spam. Spam traps are their best tool in order to identify a spammer. Believe me none of these ISP’s went to a little “company” in somewhere in the world, and handed them their most precious lists.

If SPAM traps were publicly available, they wouldn’t work anymore. No Internet Service Provider will ever share their spam traps with any email verifier, because it is against their business principles.

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