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throw away and disposable email addresses - what are they and the pros and cons

Disposable Email Address: What Is It & What Are the Pros and Cons

Spam emails are annoying, and they threaten our privacy on the internet. Many people resort to disposable email addresses to keep invasive and unsolicited spam emails at bay.

But what exactly are disposable email addresses?

Disposable email addresses are temporary email accounts created to prevent spam and unsolicited emails from cluttering your inbox. Additionally, disposable emails protect against phishing attacks or other cyber crime propagated via email.

So, do you need a disposable email address? What are the pros and cons of disposable email addresses? Let’s find out!

What Are Disposable Email Addresses?

A disposable email address (DEA) is a temporarily used email address with no long-term value to the user. Unlike a permanent email, you can discard it without affecting your contacts and messages. These email addresses are mainly used to limit your original email address visibility.

Disposable email addresses can significantly reduce spam emails if you use them effectively. For example, some websites require your email address to continue reading an article or just to browse around. They include your email to their mailing lists to promote their products and services via email — thus creating a sales funnel. Instead of using your original email address, you can use a disposable email address to avoid these spammy marketing emails altogether. And whenever your temporary email account starts receiving too much spam, you can ditch it and create a new one.

Different Types of Disposable Email Addresses

Disposable email addresses can be of different kinds. Here are the three most used types of disposable email addresses –

Throwaway email address

These are the typical disposable email addresses that you can use for a certain period, and you can delete them any time you want. Some throwaway email address even includes a timer and delete the account automatically when the timer runs out.

Forwarding email address

A forwarding email address service receives the emails in a separate domain name and forwards them to the user’s personal account. It helps protect anonymity and limits the visibility of your email address.

Alias email address

Most major email service providers offer aliases or variations of the original email address. These aliases share the same inbox, contacts, and settings as your personal email address but have a different name.

Disposable Email Addresses Pros

Limits spam

Even in 2021, 122 billion spam emails are sent every day, accounting for about 85% of all emails. Spam emails pose security threats and make it difficult for you to get to the important emails. Temporary email accounts help fight email spam by limiting your email exposure and allowing you to delete the spam emails and the email account whenever needed.

Offers anonymity

On the web, staying anonymous is staying safe. The more personal information you share on the web, the higher the risks of a phishing attack. Disposable email addresses come in handy for commenting and posting on public forums that hackers scour through for personal data. They also prevent your email address from ending up on an email marketing list you are not interested in.

Keeps you safe

Each time you enter an email address to sign up on a different website, you threaten the safety of your email account and any other websites that you sign up using the same email address. Disposable email addresses eliminate these data breach risks by using unique credentials every time. It also reduces the chances of dictionary attacks and Brute force attacks on websites.

Keeps your inbox clean

Email is the most used communication tool in both the personal and professional world. However, daily spam email cluttering your inbox makes it incredibly difficult to find legitimate emails in the pool of spam. With a disposable email address, you can abandon your address if it starts to receive too much spam and switch to a fresh one.

Easy to use and discard

Temporary email addresses are quick, easy to start, and even easier to discard and delete. They do not require any signing up or will not ask you to provide any personal information. Meaning everything is anonymous, instantly available, and simple.

Disposable Email Addresses Cons

Might not work on some websites

One of the best use cases of temporary email addresses is you can use them on websites where you don’t want to share your original email address. But many websites counteract it by declining disposable email domain names because of the negative impact on email deliverability. Websites also ban temporary email addresses due to the high chances of duplicates.

Passwordless

Temporary email addresses are almost always passwordless to keep the users anonymous. But if you use simple email addresses such as john@xyz.com, it is easily guessable and accessible to anyone. However, you can use hard-to-guess addresses to tackle this security issue.

Temporary

While the short lifespan of the disposable email address is an excellent advantage for many, it can be pretty challenging to manage for individuals. Don’t use temporary email addresses anywhere you want to stay in touch in the long-term, for example, in CV, institutions, organisations, etc.

Disposable email addresses are a great tool to protect your privacy on the web and keep your personal email account safe from potential attackers. Keep in mind that privacy is your right, and you should be able to choose with who you share your personal information. This is why you need to check your email address visibility to prevent unsolicited use and spread of your email address.

Go to Sniff Email to check your email address visibility on the web. Sniff Email is an online platform dedicated to finding out if your email address exists on the internet. Enter your email address in the search field and click fetch to find out if your email address exists on the web within a few seconds. Based on the results, you can take appropriate action to remove it.

 

Photo by Pawel Czerwinski on Unsplash

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