How to Protect your Email Address on Websites

By Posted 2005 Updated   Tips

Its is essential to protect your email address from spam. How can you protect email published on websites? You made a cool website. You published your active favorite contact email address on the contact webpage (with a nice logo maybe). Suddenly over weeks, your favorite email id has tons of spam mail in the inbox. Why?

Your email is tracked by special search bots that index web pages and pick up listed email addresses there. Then spammers may use these to send you unwanted emails.

Protect Email from Spam

  1. EmailDo not list your favorite email address on webpages as you usually do.
  2. Use forms for feedback which submit via cgi scripts. Many of us use free hosting like Geocities.com. These forms are better for receiving feedback and very convenient for surfers. So these forms come in handy. Also they protect your email by not revealing it in the page source code. Read here Why Email links are Bad for Feedback.
  3. Use an image to display the email address. Bots cant see your email address from the images source code, so they cant detect your email ID. This will prevent detection of your email address for fraudulent purposes. Beware, if you use the ‘alt’ tag to label your email address, then the whole exercise is in vain. If you really need to add alternate text to the image as a necessity – then change the text to something else. If you can customize on a neat small image on your image editor like Adobe Photoshop, then its great.But if need the image fast and can do with less customization, then E-Mail Icon Generator is for you. Just enter your email address and it creates an image for your email ID. Just upload the image to your server and protect your email. Or if you prefer more customization, you can try the Mask Email Image Generator which will create a JPG image of your email address.
  4. Twist the text – Instead of putting down your email address as a whole list it down as ‘yourname at yahoo dot com’. That will make a human user understand the email, but not the bot. It will get tracked by the bot in future as bots get smarter than this trick.
  5. Use an alternate email address. If you still feel you cant live without users seeing you email id with @ and all / or without images or ‘mailto:’ links

Why not try a free email service like Yahoo mail, hotmail or gmail. Just dump these accounts and create a new one if you believe it is spammed beyond your control. These emails have very effective spam protection filters to send you junk mail to Bulk / spam folders and keep it separate from your inbox. If you really do not wish to use a regular email service, disposable email services are also available to quickly create any unusual email address, receive emails and dump later.

Maybe you don’t like free stuff. Some registrars like GoDaddy.com give you free 100 email forwards with a domain you buy from them. Which means you get to create 100 email address like admin@yourname.com or contact@yourname.com or harry@yourname.com. These emails just forward to your prescribed email address. The sender does not know your actual email address and it reaches your correct favorite email id anyway. If it is getting spammed, just delete the forward, change to another email, or create a new forward. Protect your email today!


11 comments on “How to Protect your Email Address on Websites

  1. Anil says:

    I was totally unaware of it though I use internet regularly.
    I immediately changes my email link on my blog to image. Very very thanks.

  2. Anonymous says:

    You can also use Spamproofer to change the email address to HTML characters in the code, which makes it difficult for Bots to figure out.

  3. Case says:

    SpamGourmet.com gives you FREE email disposable email addresses that can be setup to only receive x messages. Works great.

  4. sMhyla says:

    good ideas, thanks!

    ps. surprised you don’t use something like haloscan for your comments.

  5. helios says:

    or maybe you should try

    dynamic drive’s email riddler

    i don’t actually know if it IS safe but i use it in my blog and other websites. it encrypts your email address and transforms it to a series of numbers when displaying it.

  6. Kapeel says:

    hello sir,
    could u tell me how i protect my email address from junkmails.

  7. Tom Jackson says:

    Very good advice. Email harvesters can spam you hundreds of times in a day. Gmail is very good for filtering out spam – I’d recommend this as your displayed web email address.

    Tom

  8. conservatories says:

    Spam is a bad problem, i dont think the image protection will help as they have software that will scan and read it like as you would with a scanner converting to text, forms are a good option but then again they may just index forms with the form names and then send the spam.

  9. i3l1nd3d says:

    yeah what happens alot is they sell the email lists to marketing companies , they use a spiel like “look we have over N amount of active email adresses and we want to get rid of them for say.. N amount of dollars ”

    good article though maybe with new spam technology well be able to defeat these kinds of things

  10. Chris Leroux says:

    Proficient, thanks for sharing this information. Looks great on my iPhone, but on the Blackberry Pearl’s browser your site comes out a little erratic.

  11. Asha says:

    Dear sir,
    How to secure the E-mail ID please give idea to secure my Id

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