Has your email address become a target for spam and scams? One solution is to create a throwaway email, or temporary email address, one that you can use to register, sign up, experiment, etc., without worrying about your real, permanent email address getting bombarded with junk. Fortunately, there are plenty of sources for disposable and temp email addresses that help you avoid the spam and scams.
It’s secure and easy to sign up for EmailOnDeck, making it one of the best ways to pick up a free throwaway email provider. Use the email to do anything you want to do anonymously, and within a matter of hours, that email address will be gone forever.
EmailOnDeck doesn’t back up sent emails and wipes its servers regularly, too. The servers use the TLS protocol to ensure that the emails you send are secure. In addition, the data-hosting facilities are SOC 2 Type II certified.
This provider’s programming also means that it’s much harder for sites to detect that this is a disposable email provider, which generally means you’ll get to use it on a wider range of sites than competing providers.
A Pro version lets you get rid of ads, receive over 100 emails at a time, and extend the inbox duration for 30 days. You can also save email addresses and create custom domains. Payment is only accepted in Bitcoin (0.003148) or Ethereum (0.046961). There isn’t a subscription, as you just pay every 30 days as needed.
Something that distinguishes Mailinator from other throwaway email providers is that there are already millions of inboxes ready for you to access right away without a password. Click the “Public Inbox” link at the top right of the page or enter the name of the mailbox at the top left of the page.
Under the strict condition that you don’t have any sensitive information to worry about, you can type in a random email address @mailinator.com (firstname.lastname@example.org is a good one) and see the inbox without even having to use a password.
It’s easily one of the quickest throwaway email provides for the above reasons, though it’s also less secure than one that randomly generates a mail address for you.
There are several premium plans designed for businesses. These give you private inboxes, more emails per second, and a variety of testing features for developers and testing teams to utilize. Plans range from $79 to $495 per month. A free private inbox option is available if you verify your identity with a phone number or LinkedIn account.
One thing to note is that Mailinator has become so popular as a disposable email service, that a lot of services are banning email signup with the mailinator.com address.
GuerillaMail looks like an early 90s Geocities page, but don’t judge a book by its cover – or a site by its design in this case. Beyond the unassuming web design is an easy-to-use temporary email service.
Getting started is simple. There is a handy “WTF” button that will walk you through the steps. Using GuerillaMail doesn’t require any signup or registration, nor does it use any passwords. Your inbox ID and domain are randomly generated the moment you open the GuerillaMail page. You have the ability to customize the inbox ID as well as choose from alternative domains if you wish.
The email address created will last forever, and anyone can access it, provided they know the inbox ID. GuerillaMail also gives users the option to scramble the email address you give out. This makes it virtually impossible for anyone to guess your GuerillaMail inbox ID, meaning random strangers won’t be able to access it. All emails will arrive in the inbox on the main GuerillaMail page and will be automatically deleted after one hour, regardless of whether they have been read.
If you only need an email address for a short period of time, then 10MinuteMail has you covered. True to its name, 10MinuteMail is a disposable email service that gives users a unique email address that self-destructs after ten minutes. The email address, and the contents of its inbox, are deleted after ten minutes.
Using 10MinuteMail is simple. Just point your browser to 10MinuteMail. You’ll be presented with a page that displays your unique email address along with a large timer that immediately begins to count down from ten minutes. Copy and paste the unique email address and use it for whatever site or service that requires it.
To access email sent to your address, click on the Inbox button. In addition to reading the text of emails, you will also be able to download any attachments, click links, etc. When you are done, you can close your browser or wait for the ten-minute timer to run out.
Either way, your temporary email is deactivated and destroyed. If you need more time because you haven’t received an email yet, click on the button labeled “Get 10 more minutes.” Doing so will reset the counter back ten minutes. 10MinuteMail is ideal for those who are looking for a truly temporary email that no one else can access.
If you want the privacy of a truly disposable email address but don’t want to be racing the clock, you may want to give ThrowAwayMail a try. ThrowAwayMail generates a unique email that is only accessible to you. After 48 hours, that unique email address is purged along with any mail in its inbox.
ThrowAwayMail isn’t much to look at but is super simple to use. Click on the button to generate a unique email. Once an email address is generated, a countdown timer will initiate, similar to 10MinuteMail. The big difference here is that the email address is live for 48 hours as opposed to 10 minutes.
All email sent to that address will appear on the main page. If you do not visit your unique email after 48 hours, it is deleted. However, continued usage of your temporary email address will result in your timer being extended another 48 hours. The only downside to this service is that you must have cookies enabled on your device.
If you simply want a free email address to use in situations where you don’t want to give out your real email address, Maildrop is worth a look. Maildrop is totally free and doesn’t require any sort of registration. It also allows you to create your own email address or use a randomly generated one. What sets Maildrop apart is that you can revisit the inbox of any email address created. Just remember the name of the inbox. This makes it a handy option for people who want to hang on to their temporary email address.
The fact that a Maildrop inbox lasts in perpetuity comes with a few caveats. First, Maildrop limits the types of email that reach your inbox. Unfortunately, this means that attachments are completely discarded.
Furthermore, an inbox is limited to only ten emails at a time. Finally, any Maildrop inbox that has not received an email in 24 hours will automatically be deleted. Maildrop is a good option if you don’t want to create a new temporary email address every time you need to fill out an online form.
7. Temp Mail
With Temp Mail, your throwaway email may last several days with frequent use. But what’s really great is that you’re free to delete the temporary email address at any time. You’re given a randomly generated email address when you load the page. Unless you generate a new address, you’ll see this same address and inbox whenever you load the Temp Mail site for at least two days.
Don’t worry about your information being stored, though. Not only is your data deleted when the email address deletes, but your IP address is never stored, so you don’t have to be concerned with IP tracking coming back to your computer. However, keep in mind that as these types of email providers become more popular, some sites will block them, and the same is true with this one.
These worries aside, Temp Mail also boasts a premium version that lets you connect a custom domain and create up to ten email addresses at once. This also removes any ads. It starts at $10/month or $60/year.
8. Mail Poof
Despite the neon blue background that looks like an old-school 90s site, Mail Poof works well as a disposable email address. Unlike many throwaway email providers, Mail Poof lets you choose how quickly the address and any messages delete. By default, everything deletes within 24 hours, though.
It’s completely free to use, and you can create as many new email addresses as you need. There isn’t anything to sign up for either. If you’re looking for a no-frills option, this one is hard to beat.
Just remember that if you want something deleted sooner than 24 hours, use the links under the email address to choose how often messages and the email address are deleted from the system. This ranges from one minute to never, so it can be a temporary and long-term solution as well.
If you’re looking for an interface that’s a little more modern, give FakeMail a try. While there’s no back button to go from a message back to your inbox, simply clicking the FakeMail link at the bottom of the page returns you to the same randomly generated email address and inbox you were originally given.
By default, email addresses last for one hour. But, it’s easy to extend that time by ten minutes to two weeks. You’re free to download any messages to keep permanently if you want.
Outside of having a useful disposable email provider, you’ll also see a randomly generated password and avatars. This is ideal if you need a quick password and/or avatar to create temporary accounts when testing a site or service.
Wish you had a throwaway email that lasted indefinitely? GishPuppy stands out from other options: instead of messages landing in a temporary inbox, they still land in your private email account. However, by using a randomly generated email address from GishPuppy, websites and even individuals don’t have your real address.
This is a great option if you plan to receive regular email from a site or person but don’t like the idea of sharing your real email. If spam starts up, just delete the fake email address. Your real email is still safe. Obviously, you’ll need to sign up for a free account to use this provider.
You can create as many email addresses as you would like. By using either the website or the Chrome toolbar extension, you can easily remember which fake email is tied to which website to make logins easier.
Frequently Asked Questions
How private are my emails with a disposable email provider?
This varies between providers, but throwaway emails vary between being your own inbox and a public inbox. Ideally, think of any of these providers as being public and don’t use them for any sensitive data. It’s akin to using Incognito mode on a browser: your data may or may not be as private as you think. If you want a private email account to use for random sites you’re not sure you want to get emails from, consider a private email provider like Proton.
Can I use fake email addresses to buy things?
Generally, it’s not a good idea to buy things with a throwaway email address, as in many cases, these inboxes are publicly accessible (until the emails get deleted). It’s best to leave this to your main or real email address. You can keep it safe by avoiding any interaction with spam messages.
What can I do if sites block my temporary email addresses?
In this case, you may want to create a dedicated account just for signups, trials, and anything else you’d need a throwaway email address for. Just periodically delete everything in it, and you’re done.
Are there any throwaway email services for mobile devices?
Image source: Kinga Lopatin via Unsplash. All screenshots by Crystal Crowder.
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