In this world of information overload being able to accurately focus on email's that matter whilst ignoring those which don't is invaluable and of course GEN has a service specifically for this. We call this our GENX Gateway Account which has an unusual configuration rarely seen. In a normal email configuration you would have one or more mailboxes allocated to a domain name, e.g. email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org and so on. This is great and each user has their own mailbox to manage indivudually.
GENX Gateway is radically different, and in this configuration is does not matter what is put before the @domain.com, its all accepted and lands in the same mailbox. That's one mailbox receiving ALL the email no matter what mailbox is used and we call the part before the @ the pseudo mailbox. In our example let's assume that we've setup a GENX Gateway account on domain.net and we've given this a destination mailbox of email@example.com. From this point onwards, email sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org will all wind up in email@example.com with their headers (the from and to) intact.
Some of you may now be thinking what use is that?, and its probabily not immediately clear so let's work an example scenario...
Our mail domain is domain.net, and the GENX Gateway account is firstname.lastname@example.org.
- We sign-up for Facebook and we give them email@example.com
- We sign-up for Twitter and give them firstname.lastname@example.org
- We sign-up for Linked and give them email@example.com
- We sign-up for Dodgy website and give them firstname.lastname@example.org
- We sign-up for a lead generation website and give them email@example.com
All these email's arrive in firstname.lastname@example.org without any issues and their headers will be unaltered. Now we can work some magic...
- We create some folders in our mailbox and call them Facebook, Twiter, Linkedin, dodgy1 and leads and Crap.
- We then setup some Rules which say "IF receipient is email@example.com THEN MOVE TO FOLDER Facebook". We repeat this rule for each of Twitter, Linkedin, dodgy1 and Leads.
- We add one more Rule which says "MOVE TO FOLDER Crap".
Because Rules are executed in order, any email from Facebook will but put in the Facebook folder and any email from Twitter will be put in the Twitter folder, any email not already put into folders will be put in the Crap folder.
This by itself can of course be replicated using Aliases or setting up rules based on domain, but the real benefit is three fold:
Firstly, you don't need to setup anything beforehand, you can just use any mailbox name you wish at any time. If you happen upon a website that needs you to sign up, and let's face it most do, then you can just make up a new mailbox on the spot without having to setup an alias. This is amazingly flexible.
Secondly, because your using the TO address to route instead of the FROM address then your folder rules are ALWAYS correct no matter what FROM address they use.
Finally, We all know websites will sell your data as soon as look at it, and by using a GENX Gateway account you get to see WHO is sending email to your firstname.lastname@example.org pseudo mailbox and if its not dodgy1 then they've sold you email address to someone else.
A couple of Bonus Features
I'm sure most people have used eBay at some point in their life, and whilst its a great way to frit away your hard earned cash its also a spam generation engine because everytime you buy something the seller receives your full email address and even though its against eBay rules a good percentage will add your email address to their mailing lists and start spamming you. If you'd setup "email@example.com to MOVE TO FOLDER ebay" and you start receving spam to firstname.lastname@example.org from email@example.com then you'll want to stop it. In a 'Normal' email account you would need to setup another rule to say if email from firstname.lastname@example.org then delete, but this can and does become tiresom if you use ebay often. With a GENX Gateay Account its as simple as changing your email registered with eBay to email@example.com, update your eBay rule to MOVE firstname.lastname@example.org instead of email@example.com into your eBay folder and you've single handedly left all the eBay seller spam behind.
Tracking Data Breaches is almost impossile with a normal email account, but with a GENX Gateway account its very easy to identify who has sold or leaked your email account because each website has its own pseudo mailbox name. If you find you used firstname.lastname@example.org for your internet banking and you start receiving email's to that from a travel company then its clear that one of two things has happened - Either Barcays SOLD your email address to some travel company which is something you should certainly take up with ICO, OR Barcays have had a data breach and your email address was leaked which again you should take up with ICO. When you've been using a GENX Gateway account for a few years as I have you really start to see its value in keeping your email's spam free and managed with precision.