Online Email Protector

runs as Online Service
screenshot of Online Email Protector

Are you tired of getting every piece of spam that seems to be circulating on the Internet? You may not be able to stop Aunt Sally from forwarding you the latest "miracle cure" or piece of paranoid "guys in the black helicopters" mail, but you may be able to cut down on some of the rest of it.

As you know, the Web is alive with robots, automated programs that crawl from web page to web page, grabbing whatever they find out there. In some cases, like with search engines, this is a good thing. Without Googlebot, there is no Google, and with no Google, you'll never be seen on the Web. But there is another, more nefarious type of 'bot out there, the ones that scrape web pages for email addresses. As you know if you've ever put your email address on your website, or included it in your signature in a forum posting or a Usenet thread, you've basically just invited the junk mail to come pouring in to you.

One method that many folks have used to help cut down on this type of junk is to post a graphic image of their email address. This keeps the robots from stealing your address, since most of them can't "read" images (yet), but that also means that your human visitors can't just click on your link—they actually have to type the address into their email program. Online Email Protector takes another approach to this.

Every character you can see on a web page or other chunk of HTML code can be expressed numerically as well as in the normal characters we associate with typing at a computer keyboard. Many robots aren't quite clever enough to figure this out, even though your web browser has it down cold. That means that if you encode your email address, you may not get deluged with quite as much junk. Visit Online Email Protector's site and you can encode your email address in this way. There's no registration involved; just type your email address into the form and you'll get back a encoded version of that address. Plop that on your site, or add it to your signature, and you just may keep a little bit of the spam tsunami away from your inbox.

Online Email Protector is a free online service. It should be compatible with systems running a current-generation web browser.

Download Online Email Protector

One Response to “Online Email Protector”

  1. Liam K. says:

    reCAPTCHA provides a service similar to this.

    http://mailhide.recaptcha.net/