Gmail and Sourcing Your Spam

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Gmail has a neat feature of allowing you to enter aliases with your email address.  This is a nice trick to help find the source of why you are now getting upteen thousand spam emails in your GMail account.

For exmaple, my email address is in the form of (this is a fake email, to keep spam bots from stealing my email address): [email protected]

To make an alias, just add the plus (+) symbol to your username followed by whatever you want to type.  Like: [email protected]

That’s it.  There is no setup to do, it works automatically.  Try it.  Send yourself an email to [email protected].  It will drop right into your Gmail inbox.

I do this a lot for contest or new websites that I have to signup on in order to read content.  I’ve already caught a few sites that I got spam from. 

What pisses me off is a lot of PHP websites do not support this “plus” symbol in the email address.  Saying it’s an invalid email address, or worse just parsing it out!  Come on system admins, fix your shit! 

(To the Admins) RFC2822, RFC2821, RFC1123, and RFC822 are what you can follow to ensure correct email address formats.  Which, yes, includes the “+” symbol!  Fix your sites, please.


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