Here is a great tip for those of you who own a domain name and hate getting junk mail (don’t we all!).
I would like to preface this article with the following information: This is not a sales pitch!
Did you know that you don’t have to be a business to have your own domain? As of this blog, companies such as http://www.freehosting.com will allow you to purchase a domain for $12.99* per year, and will offer you free hosting and email services, as long as you keep your domain with them. I could have a domain in my name, such ashttp://www.paulzieper.com. I could set up many email addresses and alias addresses, and I could even have my own website if I wanted to set one up. You don’t need to have a website associated with your domain in order to have emails at that domain.
* I don’t have any dealings/ affiliations of any kind with http://www.freehosting.com
If you have a domain name, (mine is www.dynamic-computer.com), then you are in luck. It can be used to filter out those junk emails.
Most domain hosting companies allow you to create many ALIAS email addresses along with your regular email accounts. My hosting company allows me to create a maximum of 50 aliases at any one time. An alias is an email address that gets forwarded to whichever primary email address you specify. All this is done on your hosting company’s website. You don’t have to change a single setting in your email program (Outlook, Outlook Express, Thunderbird, Gmail, Hotmail, Eudora, etc.). It’s simple to create one of these alias addresses. All I had to do, was go log into my webmail account on my hosting company’s web site. Under the menu heading called “Domain Settings”, I selected the “Alias” option. I was then prompted to enter a new alias email address (email@example.com) and the email address I wanted to forward that address to (firstname.lastname@example.org). I saved my new address and logged out. That’s all there was to it. Best of all, I didn’t have to go into my email program and set up a new email address, since the new alias address (email@example.com) will be picked up by my main address (firstname.lastname@example.org), which already exists in my email program.
There are two great reasons for using an alias. The first, is that you can make your company look bigger than it is by setting up alias address for different departments (even if you don’t have the departments)! My primary email address is email@example.com. I can create many alias addresses that all get forwarded to my primary email address. For instance, I can create aliases like, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org,email@example.com, etc. Wow! Suddenly I have an accounting and marketing department. I had better hire someone quick! All of alias addresses are forwarded to and picked up by my firstname.lastname@example.org email. All I have to make sure of, is that I have the primary email address set up in my email program. By doing this, all emails from my primary and alias addresses will be picked up by this single account. Therefore, I don’t have to set up each individual email address in Outlook, just the one. The great thing about this, is that even though I forwarded my alias addresses to my primary address, the address that appears on the “To:” line of the incoming email will be whatever alias address it was sent to. To expand upon this even more, you can optionally set up filtering within your email program which will send each alias email to its own folder when the email is processed. Now you are the master of your domain!
The second, and extremely beneficial reason for creating an alias, is that it can significantly cut down on the amount of un-solicited spam emails you receive each day. Surf the web with an alias.
Let’s say you have to enter an email address to sign up for a web service, contest or promotion. The issue with using your primary email address when signing up for contests or other web offerings is that you cannot delete the address when it eventually gets spammed to death. This is highly problematic because you are still receiving all your valid emails to that address. In addition, you would have to set up a new account in your email program, and you would have to notify and confirm that every contact in your address book is going to use your new address. Lastly, if you have any printed material, such as business cards, letterhead, flyers, etc., you would have to reprint them too.
Why not use an alias instead of using your main email addresses! Even if you did have a non-alias address such as email@example.com, it would eventually, over time be spammed so much that you would have to delete it and create a new address. So, how can you avert this situation? Create an alias email such as, firstname.lastname@example.org which will be forwarded to your primary email address email@example.com. After a while you may start to get LOTS of junk/spam emails from the firstname.lastname@example.org address. This can occur because the company who you supplied your address to has provided it to other affiliations of theirs, or have just sold your address to another company. No problem! All you do to fix this, is delete your alias email@example.com (provided the contest is over) and create firstname.lastname@example.org. Now, any email directed to your old contest1 address will never get to you because the email alias address does not exist, and they don’t know about the contest2 address. Remember the best thing of all, is that you don’t have to mess with your main email address or make any changes to your email program. Everything happens automatically and instantly!
Please comment back and let me know how it goes…