How to Set up a Default Email Address in cPanel

What is a "Default" Address?Default Address

A default address is an email address designated to accept emails sent to invalid / undefined email addresses.  

For example, if your domain is example.com and someone sends an email to bob@example.com and you do not have that email address set up as an email account or email forwarder, you can either reject emails like that or have that forwarded to another address.

Recommended Settings

We normally suggest that emails sent to invalid / undefined email addresses be discarded because you will receive a lot more spam if you set up a default address.  

You usually only turn on default addresses if you have some software processing the email for you at the email address you are forwarding to.

Some web hosts will have this option disabled, and require you to contact their support department if you need to set up a default address.

Directions & Video Tutorial

How to setup a Default Address in cPanel. Video shows the Paper Lantern cPanel theme, but the steps will be the same no matter which theme you use.

To set up the default address or turn it off:

  1. Log into cPanel
  2. Look for the Email section, and click on the Default Address icon.
  3. Select the domain name you wish to update.
  4. Select one of the following:
    • Discard with error to sender (turns off default address).
    • Forward to Email Address and enter the forwarding address (turns on default address).
  5. Click on the Change button.

Settings Apply to Whole Domain

These settings are for the entire domain name.  If you want more control, you should select “discard with error to sender” for all undefined email addresses and instead define specific email accounts or enable email forwarding.

Beware of Spam

Please be aware that many spammers guess at email addresses hoping to get their spam through.  So setting up the default address which forwards all invalid / undefined emails to a single email address will cause you to receive all of that spam.

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