Mail: Hand Icon, What Does It Mean?

You may see a hand icon on your email messages. This hand icon may appear in the iOS and macOS Mail app. This article explains what the hand icon means that you may see on your iPhone, iPad, and Mac.

See also: iOS Mail: No Sender & No Subject Bug, Fix

The hand icon may appear next to the sender’s name on your email messages as you can see below:

Mac hand icon in Mail
Mail app hand icon on Mac


iOS Mail hand icon
iOS Mail hand icon

This hand message means that you received this email from a sender who is in your ‘blocked’ list.

When you block a contact, she or he can still email you, and when you receive an email from a blocked contact, a hand icon will appear indicating that you blocked this contact.

If you think that the hand image is there for no reason because you did not block the contact, it is highly likely that you accidentally blocked the contact. But do not worry, blocking is not permanent and you can always unlock as easy as blocking.

See also: Mac Mail App Opens Itself Randomly, Fix

You can unblock this contact by going to Settings > Mail > Blocked. This screen will show your blocked contact list. You can remove a contact by tapping the Edit button. You can also unblock a contact by swiping left and then tapping the red Remove button. You can also unblock a contact by going to Settings > Phone > Blocked Contacts. Then tap edit and tap the red minus icons to remove them.

Once you unblock the contact, the hand image will disappear from the old email messages.

A blocked contact cannot call, FaceTime or text you.

See also: How To Delete Spam & Trash (Instead of Archiving) Fast in iOS (Gmail)

Dr. Serhat Kurt worked as a Senior Technology Director. He holds a doctoral degree (or doctorate) from the University of Illinois at Urbana / Champaign and a master’s degree from Purdue University. Here is his LinkedIn profile.

Thank you for choosing to leave a comment.

Please note the following:

  • All comments are moderated.
  • Your email will NOT be published nor shared.
  • All SPAM comments will be deleted.
  • Please see our comment policy page for more info.

5 thoughts on “Mail: Hand Icon, What Does It Mean?”

  1. I thought the purpose of blocking a persons email was so that we didn’t have to see it! So why am I seeing it? Little hand is at the top right! Makes no sense to me at all…
    I blocked a phone number and I don’t get phone calls from that number, but I block an email and I get emails!

  2. If we can send people to the moon, IT should be able to honor our request to block disgusting Emails and send them directly to trash. This is ridiculous to continue to allow emails through and just put a red hand on it. If you can put the red hand on it, they should be able to send those disgusting emails to trash!!!!!!!

  3. I have the same problem. Blocked sender emails, marked with a red hand, still reach my inbox, although rule is defined sending them to spam.

    • I agree!!!
      I don’t have problem with this person. But somehow her email is similar to mine and she’s from London.. I get all her QVC confirmations and her Hermès delivery confirmations. Drives me insane and cannot get them to stop!

      Just had to vent…. and this lady doesn’t seem to realize she’s N.E. we gotten the first confirmation for any of her many orders!!😂


Leave a Comment