By Steve Bass
Fight Spam with a Disposable E-Mail Address
Al Saxton, a TechBite subscriber, uses a disposable e-mail address for newsletter subscriptions. If he sees an influx of spam, he stops using the address, creates a new one, and re-subscribes. No fuss or muss.
The easiest free disposable e-mail service I’ve tried is Spambox. Give it your real e-mail address so the message can be forwarded; decide how long you want the e-mail address to last (up to one year); and click the “Generate Spambox” button. Then use the new disposable address to subscribe to newsletters. (Don’t aggravate me by asking if Spambox is collecting addresses in order to spam, y’ hear?)
Here’s one of my disposables: mailto:A6H1Rs1bgjKdFAhj@666.joliekemulder.nl
One potential downside to this trick is the fact that the address may be seen as spam by your ISP when it’s forwarded to your real e-mail address. You can find out by experimenting with it.
‘Plus Addressing’ to Tackle Spam
I wrote about “plus addressing” years ago in PC World. It’s a trick to spot where spam is coming from and stop it from landing in your inbox. Basically, you use a unique e-mail address when you sign up for a newsletter or Web service. If you start receiving spam at that distinct e-mail address, you know it’s been compromised.
TechBite’s columnist Steve Bass and PC World Contributing Editor publishes a free weekly newsletter with commentary on the technology products he loves, the strategies for getting the most out of them,and the gotchas that can cause computing misery. Sign up for the newsletter here