How do I filter out e-mails with an empty To: fields in Gmail?
July 17, 2012 9:14 AM   Subscribe

How do I filter out e-mails with an empty To: fields in Gmail?

I basically want to filter out e-mails that I receive but have an empty "To:" field in gmail (and from specific e-mail addresses) but I can't figure out how to specify it with Gmail's filtering search criteria boxes. You've probably seen these e-mails as To:undisclosed recipients, but when you look at the details it is because the To: field is blank. I'm quite familiar with creating gmail filters, but I just can't figure out what to put in the search box to make gmail look for To: fields with 'nothing' in them and every tutorial I've found online is about how to send e-mail like this, not filter out ones you receive. I've tried leaving all the search fields blank which finds all my e-mails, tried empty quotes and parenthesis, ie "" or () but it still returns all e-mails, and I've tried typing in "undisclosed recipients" but it didn't find these e-mails (unless those words were actually written in the To: field). Is it even possible to search for blank To: fields?
posted by mxmm to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
From this site, it looks like you could try: AND AND
posted by BurntHombre at 9:19 AM on July 17, 2012 [1 favorite]

Ah nice! Never would have guessed that. Actually, I think I might have seen the deliveredto: criteria but I tried putting that in the To: box. You need to either type it in the general search box (which I did this time) or put it in the Has The Words: box if you are in the advanced search mode.

posted by mxmm at 9:47 AM on July 17, 2012

That will also filter out anything that is bcc'd to you, even if it has a To: field.
posted by grouse at 10:38 AM on July 17, 2012

Something along the lines of
kind of works. You'd want to be careful to make sure that you weren't being bcc'd on mail to addresses in other TLDs, though.
posted by hades at 5:00 PM on July 17, 2012

Here's a somewhat more complete version of that. It's an ugly hack, but might be enough for your purposes.


Apologies for the super-long line. I just tested it in my own account, and it did seem to match all the messages with an empty or missing To: header. Or, rather, all the messages it matched had an empty or missing To: header. I don't have a way to check whether it found all of the messages like that, because if I did, I could just tell you how to do that, instead.
posted by hades at 5:14 PM on July 17, 2012 [1 favorite]

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