GADGETS

The best ways to hide your email address


Firefox Relay is one of many email alias services.

Firefox Relay is one of many email alias services.
Screenshot: Firefox Relay

The flood of emails arriving in our inboxes shows no signs of stopping or slowing down perhaps ever, so if your email service you choose will be usable in any way, it is crucial that you take steps to protect your primary addresses. There are now a number of options for this, and you should be able to find at least one that suits you workflow.

Here are some options you can use in addition to the obvious strategy of simply creating a secondary email address that you use for less important communications – a tried and trusted approach that still works today. The idea with pseudonyms, as we will list below, is that they are more convenient and easier to create (and delete) than readable email addresses.

Gmail

Gmail alias options aren’t particularly sophisticated, but they are simple, free, and useful in certain scenarios. Like us previously explained, you can add waypoints anywhere to your Gmail email address, and messages sent to them will still arrive in your inbox. If your email address is [email protected], you will receive emails sent to [email protected] and [email protected], for example.

Another option — although the one that appears seems less willing to accept — is to add a plus symbol and then the text of your choice after the main email handwriting, but before the @ sign. So you can use aliases like [email protected], or [email protected], for example. There is no need to ‘create’ or ‘delete’ these aliases: they are only available to you whenever you need them.

You must use these aliases with Gmail filters to get the most out of them (use Create a filter link in the search box at the top of Gmail on the web). So you can apply a specific tag to emails that come in a specific alias, or you can mark these emails as read and automatically archive them, or you can send them to the trash.

Yahoo

If you sign up for a free email address on Yahoo, you get a generous 500 one-time email addresses., although everyone has to start with the same randomly assigned nickname that Yahoo gives you (some pointless mix of letters and numbers). You can add ‘newsletters’ to one one-time address, for example, and ‘shopping’ to another, and so on and so forth.

Unlike Gmail aliases, these must be created separately. From your Yahoo email inbox on the web, click the gear icon (top right), then select More settings. Select Mailboxes and you will see the alias options below Disposable email address title. Click Add, and you can set the address and give it a display name and a description if you want.

Once you are when you’re done with the temporary email address, you can get rid of it: Select any of the addresses in your list, then click Delete address, and is gone forever. Except for the nickname given to you—you can’t change—this is actually one of the best alias options, with hundreds of free disposable email addresses.

Outlook

The alias system that comes with the Outlook address associated with your Microsoft account is similar to the one Yahoo offers, but Microsoft only gives you 10 one-time email addresses, instead of 500. In this case, you can choose whatever you want you want it to appear in front of the ‘@ outlook.com’ section of the email address.

The easiest way to create aliases is to go to your Microsoft account page on the web. Click Your data, then Edit account information, and you can add and remove email addresses associated with your account. All you need to provide is the email address you want to use, and Microsoft will take care of the rest. One alias must also be set as your primary alias, which you can do from the same screen.

These are pretty advanced aliases, also. You can sign in to Windows with them and send emails from them as well as receive messages. When you remove an email address, it’s gone forever and can’t be recycled, so make sure you definitely want to get rid of it before deleting it (this also means it can be hard to find email addresses that haven’t already been requested).

Select your Outlook email address ... until no one else has downloaded it.

Select your Outlook email address … until no one else has downloaded it.
Screenshot: Outlook

Apple Hide my email

iCloud supports basic aliases in a similar way to Yahoo and Outlook. If you upload iCloud to the web, then go to the Mail component, you can click on the gear icon (top left) and then Accounts to configure up to three email aliases: These can be any @ icloud.com address you want, and you can give each one a tag to help you distinguish them.

Hide my email is something different and creates email addresses that are far more accessible: you can create and delete them more easily, and you get a randomly selected collection of numbers and characters given to you, so you can’t determine the address you get. You can’t send messages from these one-time addresses as you can from a full alias – they’re basically just there to be added as an extra layer to the top of your main inbox.

If you pay Apple for iCloud storage, you get Hide my email as part of iCloud + and you can create new email addresses from iCloud on the web or any of your Apple devices uiCloud settings. If you don’t pay for iCloud, you can still use Hide My Email, but only on sites and apps that support Sign in with Apple.

Firefox Relay

Firefox is like that much more than a regular web browser these days, and one of the services that has been singled out from the main software application is Firefox Relay. The idea is more or less the same as Hide My Email, allowing you to create davailable email addresses that are forwarded to your main address, which you can create and delete as needed.

From Firefox Relay pages, you can generate up to five aliases for free. You get random combinations of letters and numbers followed by @ mozmail.com, and Firefox Relay will tell you how many emails have passed through the address since you created it. You will also need to specify the actual, actual email address to which these messages will be forwarded. If you use Firefox as your browser, you will be able to enter one of your aliases with a few clicks each time you fill out a web form.

If you really like the service Firefox provides here, you can sign up for Firefox Relay Premium $ 1 per month. This gives you access to an unlimited number of email aliases, the ability to respond with your own aliases, and (almost) complete control over what exactly email addresses are.

DuckDuckGo Email Protection

DuckDuckGo is all about privacy, so of course has its own email alias, the so-called DuckDuckGo Email Protection. It is still in a private beta, but you can request an invitation. Install the DuckDuckGo application for Android or iOS, then select Email protection from the application settings page to start the service.

You get a free, personal email address @ duck.com, which serves as a forwarding email address for an account (such as Gmail or Yahoo) that you already have. You can add multiple single-use email addresses for added protection – you can’t choose what these random addresses are, but they’re easy to create and delete.

Your email aliases can be managed through various DuckDuckGo applications and browser extensions, and this is DuckDuckGo, all tracking technologies are removed from incoming emails before they are delivered to you. It is possible that the service will eventually include a monthly subscription, but it is free for now.

Protonmail allows you to set up multiple aliases if you are a paying user.

Protonmail allows you to set up multiple aliases if you are a paying user.
Screenshot: Protonmail

Protonmail

We are written earlier about the benefits of Protonmail, and a privacy-focused email service can provide you also through aliases. However, to get these additional addresses, you must be a paying customer. Prices start at around $ 6 a month, which gives you five additional email addresses.

From the Protonmail interface on the web, click Settings,, Go to settings,, i Identity and addresses to manage your aliases. You can list everything in front of the @ protonmail.com address, assuming your selection is not already taken, and you can send messages from your aliases as well as use them as a way to receive messages.

Your nicknames can be disabled and deleted from the same screen, after which all messages sent to them will be returned to the sender — so do other services on this list. It’s probably not a strong enough feature to switch to Protonmail, but it’s handy if you’re an existing user.

Masked email

Masked email is a somewhat niche option because you have to use both Fastmail i 1Password already — but if it’s you, it’s worth a look. The service costs nothing extra, although of course Fastmail and 1Password do, so check out the wealth of features and functionality you get in return to decide if it’s worth your effort.

If you choose to use masked email, you can generate an unlimited number of random, one-time email addresses that simply forward messages to your main inbox. You have no control over what these addresses are and cannot send emails from them or use them as your primary email address.

One of the key advantages of this option is convenience. With the 1Password extension installed on all your devices, you can very easily create a new email address when you sign up for something online or within the app. Moreover, if a particular email address becomes a problem, it can be quickly disabled from Fastmail.

A few more options

There are even more options out there if none of the ones we mentioned fit. It may be a sign of how crowded and overcrowded our inbox is that there are so many services that help you protect your primary email address from spam and unimportant messages.

SimpleLogin is independent and open-an original service worth checking out, and you can get 15 pseudonyms for free (pay $ 4 a month for an unlimited number). It integrates well with web browsers and smartphones, and you can send messages from your aliases, also. On the other hand, they are completely random — yyou cannot select the addresses you get with SimpleLogin.

Another popular and well-known choice is AnonAddy, which matches SimpleLogin in many areas: It is also built on open source software and allows you to send messages from your aliases. You can choose completely random addresses, or you can choose your own, and you can create an unlimited number of random aliases for free — although there are monthly bandwidth limits.



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Naveen Kumar

Friendly communicator. Music maven. Explorer. Pop culture trailblazer. Social media practitioner.

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