The modern internet is not built around privacy. In fact, there are thousands of people and entities trying to get access to all your personal information either to use for advertising or to sell it to someone who is going to use it for the same reason. Unfortunately with the rise of social media networks, anonymity is merely a dream unless you don’t have any social media accounts yourself.
Let us say that is true, how do you stay anonymous when communicating with someone through the internet? A simple answer to that would be by sending anonymous emails, yes that is possible. It isn’t actually that hard to send an anonymous email and there are legitimate reasons to do so.
What is an anonymous email?
Put simply, an anonymous email is one that hides the sender’s identity. For an email to be considered anonymous, it must be done via technologies that make the email untraceable to you.
There are multiple ways this could be done, however, we will split it into two simple categories: complex but effective and simple but slightly riskier.
The complex but effective method to send anonymous emails
This method requires a bit more work upfront and is a bit of an inconvenience if you are planning to use it frequently. Despite all that, it could still be the most user-friendly out of the bunch.
The first and the most crucial step is to turn on a VPN like VPN Surf to mask your IP address. Pick any popular email service like Gmail or Yahoo and create a new account. Throughout this process, don’t use any information that could lead back to you. Therefore, you should input a fake name, date of birth, and home address. If the email service requires you to provide a real phone number for identity verification, we recommend getting a new number solely for this purpose or picking a different email service provider.
The caveat with using this method is that you should always turn on a VPN before even opening the email tab within the browser. It is also highly recommended to use a separate browser in incognito/private mode whenever accessing this account. If you forget to do this even once and the service provider ever sees your real IP address, it could be used to trace the emails back to you and thus discover your identity.
The simple but slightly more risky way to send emails anonymously
As you probably already know, if there’s a market for it, there is a service provider that offers it. Anonymous web mailing services are no exclusion to this rule. This method consists of the use of these services. The best ones offer the following:
- Automatic deletion of mail from a server
- Blocked IP address
- Password Protection of your anonymous mail
- Minimal Personal Information
Of course, depending on the service provider, these apps will all come with their unique features and tools. Just to be safe, we still recommend you use a VPN whenever trying to send any emails via these services.
Now, we will list some of these services along with some advantages they have.
Guerrilla Mail provides ephemeral messaging—disposable, temporary email you can send and receive—and it's all free. Technically, the address you create will exist forever, even if you never use it again. Any messages received, accessible at guerrillamail.com, only last one hour. You get a totally scrambled email address that's easily copied to the clipboard. You can even attach a file if it's less than 150MB in size, or use it to send someone your excess bitcoins.
There's an option to use your own domain name as well, but that's not keeping you under the radar. Coupled with the Tor browser, Guerilla Mail makes you practically invisible. It's also available on Android.
To protect from dangerous messages, Maildrop discards all email attachments. In addition, messages must be below 100 kilobytes. Each inbox holds a maximum of 10 messages, and any address that isn't active for 24 hours gets reset. Finally, Maildrop also employs powerful spam protection, so even if you enter your address on a shady site, most of the junk won't find its way to your temporary inbox.
For more security, you can use an alias address for your Maildrop inbox so others can't just open it up in Maildrop themselves. Overall, Maildrop provides a clean, simple interface for when you have to enter your email address but don't want to risk your own. It can't send mail and it's not meant for permanent use, but it's a solid tool for getting a quick email.
ProtonMail is one of the most popular secure email providers. If you need a completely secure, anonymous, and two-way email service, ProtonMail is the answer. ProtonMail has a long history of offering secure email services, and millions of people rely on them to keep their communication private and anonymous at all times.
Some core ProtonMail features include:
- End-to-End Encryption: Messages are not only encrypted when they're sent from ProtonMail servers, but all stored messages are encrypted as well. Without access to the appropriate ProtonMail account, no one can access your messages.
- Private User Data: ProtonMail's encryption process, which uses an encryption key on your computer, meaning even the system administrators at ProtonMail can't access your messages. On the downside, this means they can't recover your account for you. On the upside, it means they can't provide your messages to any governing authority either.
- Open Source Cryptography: Since ProtonMail uses open-source cryptographic libraries, you can be sure there are no "back doors" available for anyone to access your emails. That includes both system administrators or hackers.
If you regularly send two-way encrypted emails, you should consider signing up for a ProtonMail account and using that as your primary address.
Do you value your privacy online?
Use VPN Surf and surf safely and securely in the open waters of the internet.