Torkil Johnsen

My personal piece of cyberspace

Using Gmail? Tried “dynamic” aliases?

Posted in Software on Dec 13th, 2010

While GMail does not offer traditional aliases to be set up for your_name@gmail.com, but you can get dynamic aliases that you can add on the fly when providing your e-mail address to someone. This comes in handy when registering on websites or subscribing to newsletters.

GMail is normally really good at filtering spam, but sometimes you’ll still get e-mails with offers for buying this or investing in that. Many of the senders also kindly allow you to unsubscribe to their newsletter, but maybe you didn’t want it in the first place? Where have they picked up your mail address? Scraped it off the internet? Bought it?

I recently also saw a tweet concerning DeviantART’s mailing list having been compromised, and a lot of people’s e-mail addresses have probably now ended up in the hands of spammers. The person tweeting luckily had an alias set up that he could just kill off to avoid being spammed any further.

GMail has this nice little feature that allows you use your_name+whatever@gmail.com as your e-mail address. So for each new site you register on you can use a new address. For DeviantART you could use your_name+deviantart@gmail.com for instance. This makes it easier to find out who has lost or sold your e-mail address in the future, and it makes it really easy to block unwanted mail with a quick filter.

  • http://torkiljohnsen.com Torkil Johnsen

    Oh, and it works for Google Apps accounts too.

  • Fedroz

    Can’t spammers take their email database and cut the part between + and @ from the gmail addresses?

  • http://www.alfystudio.com Ahmad Alfy

    I use this trick to manage multiple accounts on twitter … all using the same account :)
    GMail is *teh* email!

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