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Gold Conversationalist

tips for creating new email addresses, plz

People (including my wife) often create memorable email addresses that may include some personally identifying phrase. In the long past I preferred more anonymous addresses and I have even set up some using a phrase created with a random password generator, eg: something like "xlSOf?r_st_73proStl1@ffffred.com"

 

My main email address (created by my wife a number of years ago) has gotten fettered with too much clutter and I want to create a new address dedicated to financial use. I want it not to have any personally identifying information, no "huggieBear1963@ffffred.com", etc.

 

Do the experts here have any thoughts on this? Other than using my crypto random phrase method.

 

Edit to add:  my employer had their own domain and we early employees had email addresses like bob@company.com. This was really nice when giving someone my address over the phone, "oh, yes, just send that to me at bob@company.com" Easy!  But earlier I had set up an email with my university alumni association. I couldn't believe my luck that I could get "bob@unialumni.org". And this was a major university! It worked great for several years until the spam explosion. The organization did not have good spam control and my account became unusable and worthless. That is one reason why a crypto random phrase can be useful, it's not very likely to be generated by a spam generating machine.

Periodic Contributor

If you use gmail, there are a couple secrets hidden in the gmail "help" and you can create a "new" email address for (almost) every website you visit, and they all come to one gmail account!

 

NOTE: I'm going to truncate "@gmail.com" to just "@gmail" in my examples.

 

  • GIVEN: normal gmail email address form is "user.ID@gmail."
  • Periods on the left of the @-sign are ignored."My.I.Last@gmail" is the same as "M.y.I.L.a.s.t@gmail" and "myilast@gmail" [when I give emails to companies, I leave out the periods as a personal hint]
  • You can add a plus sign (+) between your user ID and the @-sign. For example, "myilast+aarp@gmail" or "myilast+sears@gmail" work. If you get an email addressed to "myilast+sears@gmail" and the email is an ad for 5/3 Bank, you know it's bogus - Why would 5/3 Bank use my Sears email?

NOTE: a few sites won't accept an email address with a plus sign (+) in it, but they're rare. As I said above, I leave the periods out of addresses I give to companies. So if the user ID has periods and it's from a company, I view it with suspicion. If I need to, I can use my browser's "saved logins" to look-up my login for the company - if it doesn't match, then I'm even more suspicious! 

 

Gmail's SPAM filter is pretty darn good. A few valid emails occasionally get sent to the SPAM folder, so I review and empty the folder every day to make sure 1) don't miss a valid email and 2) SPAM reviews are easier/quicker.

 

Enjoy!

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Anonymous
Not applicable

@fffred did you decide on an email address?

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Periodic Contributor

Purchase your own domain for less than $10 per year and you can create those really simple and nice addresses like bob@yourdomain.com. Stick to .com addresses for best deliverability and least confusion among people writing it down. There are services that provide email at your own domain for as little as $10 per year.

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Bronze Conversationalist

Not a certified expert, but maybe a certified opinionated poster. LOL

I have too many email addresses. One is exclusively for ordering groceries and food delivery and other random online purchases. One is something akin to iSpitOnSpam@gmail limited to using for gaining so-called free info that requires an email to unlock a web page or is only sent by email. As an author, all my pen names have their own email.

 

Unfortunately, it's a common practice to sell email addresses. Once used for legit purposes, our addresses are almost guaranteed to be sold to a plethora of marketers. And then there are many "bot" programs that scrape addresses from social media and other online logins, including supposedly secured lists of logins and passwords maintained by all the search engines and browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Apple Safari, etc.

 

Rather than worrying much about the address per se, it's better to invest in  strong firewall / internet security with spam blocker software. The effectiveness of these change every year because the "threats" change all the time. I currently use Webroot, advised by GeekSquad.

Another consideration rather than the address name itself is which email platform you use. For example, in my experience Hotmail is awful for spam. Gmail is not much better. Outlook has worked fairly well. A domain specific address -- your example of @unialumni.org -- is not necessary better than gmail, especially if the underlying platform where the domain is registered IS gmail. I've had my own person name set up as a domain and then had that email  -- such as me@myownname.com -- stolen and used to send spam to ME! LOL

 

Hope those thoughts are helpful. 

Honored Social Butterfly


@DeahWA wrote:

Not a certified expert, but maybe a certified opinionated poster. LOL

I have too many email addresses. One is exclusively for ordering groceries and food delivery and other random online purchases. One is something akin to iSpitOnSpam@gmail limited to using for gaining so-called free info that requires an email to unlock a web page or is only sent by email. As an author, all my pen names have their own email.

 

 

 


I am the same way -- different email addresses for different purposes -- online purchasing, official business (banking, bills), friends, family, newsfeeds/updates, device/app-specific.  And I have the gamut of mail servers -- msn (and all the reincarnates -- hotmail, outlook, live), gmail, yahoo; some of them I have had since the late '90s.  I also have multiple addresses at each mail server.  Of course, it is a PITA to have to log in at each one, so on computer, I use Thunderbird.  See all 16 accounts at a glance with one click.  Mobile devices are a little bit different, but I don't need to check every account every day, so I just set up frequently used accounts on my iPhone and Android tablet. 

Regular Social Butterfly

The notion of purpose-specific (i.e. shopping, professional, personal, etc.) emails is appealing...also the 'Spam Magnet' email must certainly be simpler than setting up those '5 Minute' email addresses...love the name analogy iSpitOnSpam...lol.

Regular Social Butterfly

Like the others I have to start with the caveat that I'm not an expert.  I looked up a couple of articles about generating email addresses (personal and professional).  Not very helpful.  Walking the line between anonymity and sounding respectable seems to be the challenge.  One of the articles about professional email addresses did spark an idea though.  The article mentioned using department names as email addresses (ie. Shipping@domain.xxx or Sales@domain.xxx).  Maybe for the purpose here, incorporating a precious metal or gemstone into the name would adequately walk that line between anonymity and plausibility.

Anonymous
Not applicable

Lol @EricC227821 maybe I should use Retired@gmail.com!!! Hmmm, wonder how many folks are using that.

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Regular Social Butterfly

What about SilverPalmetto@gmail.com, GoldenBuckeye@outlook.com (probably taken), or RubyCardinal@yahoo.com?

Conversationalist


@fffred wrote:

...I have even set up some using a phrase created with a random password generator, eg: something like "xlSOf?r_st_73proStl1@ffffred.com"...That is one reason why a crypto random phrase can be useful, it's not very likely to be generated by a spam generating machine.


I'm no expert so I have no advice to offer, but I have to say, I really like your idea of using a random password generator to create an email address — that's ingenious!

 

Spam was annoying for me in my early days of email, and then it seemed to really get under control when I switched to a different email provider — almost nothing got through! It remained that way for about fifteen years.

 

But within the last year, a lot more spam has been getting through, if only to the dedicated spam folder. Still not a big deal — Select All, Delete — but it makes me wonder what changed that it's getting through that far now.

 

I realize there's wildly different levels of technological savviness, yet it's hard for me to imagine who these spam messages work on. 

 

But I guess the bottom line is it's a very cheap method of reaching near-countless people, and if they send the same email out to 100,000 addresses, maybe 99,900 will recognize it as a scam, they make their money scamming that last 100, and they're still ahead of the game. 

Anonymous
Not applicable

Hi @fffred I am not the expert you probably wanted to respond but wanted to maybe add my 2 cents if okay with you. Personally I like people to know who they are receiving my emails from. Too much spam out there and personally they get earmarked as SPAM so they bypass my IN box in future. I donot OPEN these emails for fear of a virus or malware 😱 I also donot use my email addresses online as much as I can avoid. Now I did make the mistake of signing up to take surveys after reading an article on great ways to make some money on the side 🤣😂. Be warned folks, DO NOT do this. It opens up your email address to JUNK mail as the survey site(s) sell it. Lol, I am still dealing with this madness but as I tag each junk email as SPAM, they go DIRECTLY to spam. As I have time and in the mood, I take it one level higher. Usually the spam will come from only a FEW companies but have SEVERAL accounts. I tag the MAIN part of the email, the info AFTER the @ in the EMAIL ADDRESS to go DIRECTLY to my TRASH. A lot of work over the years but I now only see maybe 10 SPAM versus 100's each day. As I make time to finish up, I am sure my SPAM may be ZERO 🙄 I can dream!!! I have used this FREE email account with my name. Have for years and apart from my SURVEY NIGHTMARE, happy with it. I am too cheap to buy the PAY version with this company. Had thought about it over the years as I like the bells and whistles. I have a 2nd email account with Microsoft Outlook which to be honest, have not used. Lol, too lazy to learn it. Came with new laptop I had to buy in 2018 when my old one had to be buried 😭 I am not sure if Outlook is set up for what you are looking for. Good luck 😀

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Gold Conversationalist

@Anonymous 

 

Maybe there should be "Tips for avoiding 'spam'" !

 

In addition to the broadcast "spam" there are emails I've "volunteered" to get. These are what are driving me nuts now.

 

I'm so glad political season is over for now. I contributed some cash to some worthy (IMO) groups and candidates. That marked me as a soft touch and then I was overwhelmed with daily pleas to send money (sometimes multiple times a day from the same group!).

And stores and businesses! Sure, some provide a "unsubscribe" link for themselves. But good luck with that in my experience ...yes, sometimes works but more often not.

 

And any other "interesting" things I may have inquired about? Oh, yes, constant updates.

 

And charitable contributions? well, email is cheap so they just keep on sending them out to me!

 

Yes, this is why I want that new anonymous email, for my own business. lol

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Anonymous
Not applicable

Lol @fffred One has to be careful with some of the UNSUBSCRIBE links too. I am told hackers sometimes use them to gain access to your sensitive information like bank stuff. So now I am at my wit's end. Lol, I guess I could CALL and hope a HUMAN answers. Everyone seems to be avoiding helping folks. Automated everything. Come on, I need a human's help 🙄

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Gold Conversationalist


@Anonymous wrote:

Hi @fffred I am not the expert you probably wanted to respond but wanted to maybe add my 2 cents if okay with you. Personally I like people to know who they are receiving my emails from. 😀


@Anonymous 

 

hi AngelaS!

 

You sound like you have a good handle on things. That's always good.

 

I think the "major" email services all have pretty good spam filtering done at their end, including @gmail and @outlook, and probably lower tiers like yahoo, etc. Little spam gets through to me, but there is a ton of targeted advertising emails to which I have subjected myself.  (Special Note!!  gmail from Google, and outlook from Microsoft are free and provide excellent service and experience using their web interface. I mainly use gmail myself.)

 

Good point you make about having an address that identifies yourself. I did this while I was working. I set up my email software to use a screen name for my email address so that it was friendlier .. think, instead of bob@littlecorp.com my emails would show as "Bob Smith at Microsoft".

 

Now the purpose I described in my first post for wanting a new "somewhat vague and anonymous" address is primarily so that I will receive email there. Important emails. From banks, credit cards, mutual funds, possibly Medicare and related insurance, SS, and other such places where I actually have an account and a business arrangement with them. I would likely not be writing to them from this address. So my plan is still in the queue for action.

 

 

Anonymous
Not applicable

Hi @fffred as I age I find myself not wanting to deal with emails, too time consuming. So much to do that is more interesting since I retired last year July. I use to have Yahoo before GMAIL, but fell out of luv with them over the years. Like a lot of them, slowly taking away the free stuff along with Customer Service. Not in luv with the FREE GMAIL but it has been serving its purpose with bank, electric bills and so on. Lol, I use to be attached to paper everything including paychecks. Now I wonder how I lived that way for so many years. Luv not having to go check my mailbox, only when junk mail 🙄 has it full and my mailman needs it empty. If I could eliminate junk mail, I would never have to go check my mailbox 😀

Gold Conversationalist

@Anonymous 

 

I wholeheartedly agree with you that such volume of email is overwhelming and not fun.

 

Regarding USPS postal mail, are you familiar with the post office's "Informed Delivery" service? This free service sends you an email (yes, another email, lol) that has scanned images of the front of all first class envelopes in your day's mail. I sometimes don't even check the mail box if there is nothing pertinent to me in there that day. But I can see if there is some important mail that I am expecting. Nice thing is that the post office doesn't then spam you with other marketing emails.

 

It can be a useful tool for those interested.

 

See https://informeddelivery.usps.com/

Anonymous
Not applicable

Yes I use it @fffred but sometimes they put mail in there without scanning (usually my free magazines from Allstate Drivewise Program), got to luv the Post Office 🤣😂 These magazines (I won several different subscriptions) do take up a lot of space in my TINY apartment mailbox. So I try to check it at least every 2 weeks. My mailman is a very nice man and I try to do my part. GRATEFUL he is still working!!!

Gold Conversationalist

Yes, it's only First Class mail that they scan. No magazines, etc.

 

But they do alert when a package is arriving.

I'm like you, I appreciate our USPS. I would hate to see it disappear. I find that most workers I've encountered are friendly and helpful, as I am friendly and helpful to them. Funny how that works.  😉

Anonymous
Not applicable

Thanks @fffred I didnot realize only 1st class. Yes, they are awesome with packages. I just need my mailman to realize I am not DEAF, so no need to pound on my door like he is the cops 🤣😂 I had some in my mailbox too.

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