I had one e-mail account that I used to register at many websites. This account started to receive several spam emails that I would classify as:

  • Blatantly spam: those are nicely filtered by gmail, but I have OCD and hate to see the notification sign that I've received spam, so I have to click and delete all messages.

  • Advertising: some known companies (that I've never bought from or registered to) knows my e-mail (don't know how) and start to send me ads emails. I can unsubscribe, but I hate to do so since I've never subscribed to them.

To reduce the ammount of spam, I've created another email account. So, how can I register to websites and reduce the risk of my email address to be shared through ads companies? Is there any e-mail filtering for this? Or using my Facebook account can help in any way?

I know that I could continue to use the old e-mail address to register to websites and concentrate there all the junk, but that's not a optimal solution since I will continue to receive spam and need to handle it from time to time.

  • It sounds like filters will work good in your situation. You can create filters to automatically delete an email from a certain address. This will make your spam go unnoticed and help keep your inbox clean. The next thing to do is quit registering your email with most websites. Like others said, use a disposable address or make a junk account that you don't care about and never check.
    – DrZoo
    Nov 2 '15 at 16:04
  • 2
    Even if you never tell anyone about an email address that exists, that email address, can still receive spam. So the best solution to spam is to simply filter it.
    – Ramhound
    Nov 2 '15 at 16:52
  • @Ramhound, good catch. If the user has a common name and uses an email like johnsmith@gmail.com, he will receive lots os spam because an email like that is easy to guess that it exist. However, johnsmith14102@gmail.com is unlikely to exist so it should not receive random spam.
    – Zanon
    Nov 2 '15 at 17:56
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    @Zanon - Except spam is cheap it is basically free to send an email. It is trivial to send spam to every combination of johnsmith@gmail.com to johnsmith14102@gmail.com. If somebody actually receives a single spam email, and clicks on it, it pays for the billion emails that were never received.
    – Ramhound
    Nov 2 '15 at 18:01

Disposable emails

If you don't trust in the website that you are registering, don't use your e-mail account. You can use instead a disposable e-mail service like 10minutemail.com

Email aliases

If you want to keep your account in the site and be able to retrieve you password later if you forget it, you can use an e-mail alias. For example, in Gmail, if you have an e-mail address named myemail@gmail.com, you can register to LinkedIn using myemail+linkedin@gmail.com. So, all e-mail messages sent to myemail+linkedin@gmail.com will be automatically redirected by Gmail to myemail@gmail.com.

If you start receiving spam, you can create an e-mail filter to automatically delete all messages sent to myemail+linkedin@gmail.com.

This + approach works for Gmail, but its not a pattern since I saw others e-mail services where it didn't work and another one where the alias sign used was -

Regarding using a Facebook account to register or any other kind of OAuth 2.0 login, I don't believe that will be of any help since the site will know your true e-mail address.

  • As I understand it, + is the most common standard. Support for that feature does vary.
    – TOOGAM
    Nov 2 '15 at 17:45

I recommend using some disposable e-mail service to prevent receiving spam. Those are temporary addresses (or forwardings) that you use to register, and after a certain amount of time, the temporary address simply expires and any further mail sent there will get a permanent error saying that e-mail doesn't exist. I personally use No-Spammers since they have an online web client that also allows attachments, which in my case is important. There are some other good services of the kind, like Mailinator and GuerrillaMail.

This way, you don't have to worry about who you give your address, you simply use the "fake" one to do the processes you need, and then you simply are unable to send more.

For the advertising of known companies, I recommend unsubscribing all of the ones you don't want to get further mail and then use this system if you suspect they will bombard you with further spam.


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