Mailinator.com What is it you ask…? Well it’s not exactly obvious from the home page so I’ll explain why and how useful this site can be. Mailinator.com & Dodgeit.com are anonymous e-Mail server with Web interfaces. Sure there are many of these (but wait…) these allows you to makeup any e-mail name as long as the domain name is “@mailinator.com” or “@dodgit.com”. I believe they also allow .net possibly others, check their home page. Why would anyone want this? Well there are many legitimate reasons and a few shady ones as well I’m sure. Let’s just stick to the legitimate ones.
Example…I recently posted something for sale on UseNet austin.forsale and/or registering on a forum… I didn’t want to provide my real e-mail address and be bothered with residual e-mails, plus allowing spammers/spiders to collect my e-mail address to pass about… DOH!
While there are many tricks like using john(at)domain.com to help prevent spam, this is easy to circumvent. Hotmail/Yahoo/etc are options also but these take time to setup and can be tracked back to your IP address. With these there is no setup, simply make up a any name ???@mailinator.com anytime you want. This server allows you go to the home page and enter your made up name/email address and receive e-mails. However after 24 or 48 hours the server automatically deletes all messages.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO Keep in mind, anyone can read any e-mail address just as easily as you can. I’d recommend using a unique ID, something not likely to be guessed. I’m not sure why anyone would pay to protect an account there, just use something obscure, not easiy guessed.
I use them to sign up for freebies, forums, whatever, occasionally. One wonderful feature is that it’s RSS enabled. You can have the account watched by a RSS Reader application that will inform you when you have new mail. After I sold my item I simply forgot the account and ID. I’m not bothered any further asking if I still have it.
Ok, it’s not that big of a deal and perhap this may become more known and filtered like HotMail, but currently it’s under most peoples radar… Someday you’ll think back and have a need for this. It’s simply a tool just like a hammer in your tool box and I know we all like tools. Enjoy!
– UPDATED 10/29/07, 1/23/08, again 3/15/09.
Alright Dodgeit.com seems to have changed to Dodgit.com , but don’t fret there are others to use/abuse.
Here are a few other anonymous e-mail sites: