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Plus addressing in emails

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When co-founder of Fathom Analytics, Paul Jarvis, yesterday tweeted a tip about using plus signs in email addresses – I thought I’d share a guide on this powerful feature.  I’m going to assume you’re using our web hosting for this guide, but it will also work with other providers such as Gmail.  You should be using IMAP or Webmail to get the most out of it.

Using Plus + Addressing

Imagine you have the email address of fred@nwdemo.co.uk.  Did you know you can therefore use the email address of fred+whatever@nwdemo.co.uk too?  Any emails send to your address + something, will automatically be delivered into a folder of that name.  You could use the address of fred+eBay@nwdemo.co.uk for your eBay account, automatically placing your emails into the eBay folder.  fred+netweaver@nwdemo.co.uk for your netweaver emails, and so on.

There’s nothing that you need to setup on your account, the folders will automatically get created if they don’t already exist.  It’s an excellent way to filter your emails and you’ll soon find out if any sites you’ve give your address to are selling/leaking it elsewhere.

Extra security

In the original tweet, Paul also suggested using random strings rather than company names for added security.  That way a bad actor won’t be able to guess your other email addresses once they have seen one.  So you could use fred+0001 or fred+hoph.

Forwarder Addresses

Most email clients automatically subscribe to the new folders, but after you start using this feature make sure yours does – or you’ll suddenly stop seeing a lot of your email.  You can also use forwarding rules to forward to + addresses if you wish.  So wholecompany@nwdemo.co.uk might forward to both fred+company@nwdemo.co.uk and sarah+company@nwdemo.co.uk.

Spam Filtering

In the event that one of your + addresses receives a lot of spam, you can always setup a filter to delete it.  Keeping your inbox clutter free.

Thanks

Thanks to Paul for the top tip.  You can find him on twitter @pjrvs

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