About reCAPTCHA for Signup Forms

We do our best to include tools in Mailchimp that will help protect you from scammers and spambots. Google reCAPTCHA is a challenge-response test intended to prevent spambots from adding fraudulent emails to your audience.

In this article, you'll learn about different types of reCAPTCHA and how they're used in Mailchimp.


Google reCAPTCHA is a system designed to tell humans and computers apart, so bots can't fill out forms maliciously on behalf of a human. The CAPTCHA acronym stands for Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart. Don't worry, you don't need to remember that!

In Mailchimp, reCAPTCHA helps prevent bots from adding fake or malicious email addresses to your audience. There are two types of reCAPTCHAS:

  • Checkbox
    This type of reCAPTCHA requires new subscribers to check an "I'm not a robot" box.
    Screenshot of the checkbox recaptcha subscribers will see on signup forms.
  • Invisible
    This type of reCAPTCHA does some additional analysis behind the scenes. It doesn't require new subscribers to check a box, and will only present a visible CAPTCHA if it detects it may be dealing with a bot.

The type of form you're working determines which reCAPTCHA you'll use.

Form TypereCAPTCHA FormatRequired?
Mailchimp-Hosted FormsCheckboxYes
Embedded or Pop-Up FormsCheckboxNo
Landing Page Signup Form Blocks (Single opt-in audience)InvisibleNo
Landing Page Signup Form Blocks (Double opt-in audience)CheckboxNo

ReCAPTCHA is only required for Mailchimp-hosted signup forms, but we recommend you enable it to protect your audience if you use embedded or pop-up up forms, or landing page signup form blocks.

Enable reCAPTCHA

To enable reCAPTCHA for your audience's embedded, pop-up, and landing page signup forms, follow these steps.

  1. Navigate to the Audience tab.
  2. If you have more than one audience, click the Current audience drop-down and choose the one you want to work with.
  3. Click the Manage Audience drop-down and choose Settings.
  4. Click Audience name and defaults.
  5. Check the box next to Enable reCAPTCHA.
    Cursor clicking the checkbox to enable reCAPTCHA.
  6. Click Save Audience And Campaign Defaults.

All set! Now your audience's embedded and pop-up signup forms will display a checkbox reCAPTCHA, and your landing page signup forms will include an invisible reCAPTCHA.

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