Stop Spam using Mail; Yahoomail tips.

by coelomic

The other day I signed up for Yahoo's Mail Plus account and boy is it good. I have been getting a lot of spam of late and, though I have utilities such as Spamsieve which does a remarkable job of cutting down the spam, it still is quite frustrating.

I did explore the idea of disposable email addresses, and for a while toyed with the idea signing up for Sneakemail. It was not quite the service that I was looking for as it only lets you have a paltry inbox and after being addicted to Gmail, it was unacceptable. Next stop was Yahoo Mail Plus, the biggest attraction of which was the addressguard facility.

It lets you chose a basename and allows you create multiple disposable mail addresses ( upto 500! ) by adding different words to the basename without ever revealing your original email address. If you start getting spam at that address, then simply shut it down. Ingenious!!

After I set up a disposable mail address I wanted to use it to send email as well, as I never wanted to give out my original email address. Yahoo lets you send email from that disposable email address by ticking a check box. Thats all fine, but I wanted to send and receive email from the disposable address using Mail.

As the disposable email address is set up to receive email into your actual Yahoo mail inbox, setting up another POP address in Mail created another account that accessed my original Yahoo inbox and proceeded to download all my previously downloaded email while I was not looking. How stupid of me! Now I had around 6000 messages in my Mail, with atleast 2000 duplicates!

Andreas amann's excellent email scripts was what I usually used to sort out duplicates, but it was too slow and I had too many duplicates. Hence I Googled and came across this masterpiece on Macosxhints.com. It did the trick in 20 minutes. That sorted I fooled around Mail to try and find a way for me to select my dummy address while sending mail from Mail.app. I finally found out that editing the account settings in Mail > Preferences > accounts > Account information > email address will take more than one email address if seperated by a comma. Now that is set up, I tried a test email and found that my dummy address showed up in accounts while composing.

Now I have the freedom of giving out my email addresses to whoever wants them, and the joy of being able to download and respond to all mail received to the dummy addresses, from the comfort of my desktop. Great!

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