Are you tired of drowning in junk mail?
Do you spend precious time clicking click ‘Move to’ and ‘Mark as Junk’? If so, you need an email alias.
An email alias is an independent email address that belongs to a single account, which is usually your main email. This email alias is attached to your main email address to be used and given to telemarketers or that guy you wish you didn’t give your email to that one time!
These emails can be created by an individual or a business for the purpose of protecting private information and fighting spam. It is estimated that from the top ten email providers that15% of users have a primary email address with an alternate alias account connected to it.
First, let’s talk about spam. We’ve all received those emails about the perfect weight loss solution or even those ransom emails about a dear friend stranded in Cyprus who is need of money. But how exactly do we get these emails?
The most common form of spam that individuals encounter is through signing up for online forums, games and even chat rooms. These websites sell your information to third parties, which increases the volume of spam entering your email address (Hoffman). Mail relaying also causes spam to fill your inbox.
Mail relaying is a special server that routes an email to the correct destination (Beal); from a local network, such a Craigslist, to a local user, like yourself. Many organizations such as eHarmony and Ashley Madison have had their account databases compromised, thereby leaking email addresses of the users (Hoffman).
In an Internet-based society, individuals and businesses are looking for more secure ways of receiving email. Have you ever registered for a daily newsletter online and then started receiving multiple emails a day? The use of an email alias allows you to send and receive emails to the alias account, diminishing the email in your main account.
Using an email alias can also make sure that you private information is never exposed. It is too easy for any one to enter your email address into a search engine and find results about your internet history and other information associated with that specific email address.
Although the use of email aliases are increasing, there is a time and a place to use them. Just remember, as an individual, we usually have email aliases to keep our information private and reduce spam. When giving out your information to an unknown source, you can feel at ease knowing your real identity is not made publicly available through your primary email. Keep your primary account professional; this should be your email that you use to correspond with your boss and family on a daily basis.
Consider the alias your junk account. It’s basically like having a disposable cellphone; use it until too many telemarketers have the number then throw it away and get a new one. With an alias, all your spam emails can be directed to one account away from your primary one. Once this alias becomes filled with spam, you can delete it as easily as you made it without the fear of losing important emails in your primary account. This makes managing junk mail exceptionally easy.
All email service providers support email aliases. In fact, Apple believes that email aliases are the solution to fighting spam. In 2012, Apple developed a patent for temporary disposal alias email – “If the server believes the email you received was spam, then it would shut down the account” (Campbell). Following Apple’s remarkable move against spam, Google mail now has the capacity to support 30 email alias accounts under your main email. In addition, Outlook, iCloud, Office 365, Rogers and Yahoo all provide users with the ability to have more than one alias account (Paul).
Email aliases are the solution to spam and the key to keep your information private. Having an alias attached to your email account helps keep your day to day inbox clean, organized and protected.
“Add or Remove an Email Alias Address for a Google Apps User.” – Google Apps Administrator Help. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2016.
Beal, Vangie. “Mail Relay.” Webopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Jan. 2016.
Campbell, Mikey. “Apple Wants to Stop, Track down Spammers with Automated Disposable Email Addresses.” Apple Wants to Stop, Track down Spammers with Automated Disposable Email Addresses. N.p., 13 Feb. 2014. Web. 10 Jan. 2016.
Hölzer, Ralf, Bradley Main, and Latanya Sweeney. Email Alias Detection Using Social Media Network Analysis. N.p., 21 Aug. 2005. Web. 11 Jan. 2016.
Hoffman, Chris. HTG Explains: How Do Spammers Get Your Email Address? N.p., 24 Jan. 2014. Web. 11 Jan. 2016.
Paul, Ian. “Use Outlook.com’s Aliases to Hide Your True Email Address from Prying Eyes.” PCWorld. N.p., 07 Feb. 2014. Web. 10 Jan. 2016