Create Throwaway Emails and Phone Numbers for Big Life Events

Create Throwaway Emails and Phone Numbers for Big Life Events

Taryn Williford
Jan 11, 2013

Getting married? Having a baby? Your life is about to change forever, and we're not just talking about your growing family. Welcome to a lifetime of spam emails. Every vendor or planner you contact, store you register for, or contest you enter is going to use and possibly sell your contact information...unless you were smart and created a throwaway email account.

You would think that wedding planning emails would stop after the date has passed, but most of the time, the vendors and stores you communicate with don't really keep tabs on each individual subscriber. And even worse, some nefarious companies are known to sell their extensive contact lists to interested parties; the wedding emails will quickly turn into non-stop newlywed-centric sales pitches.

That's why we love this tip from Reddit Life Pro Tips, which suggests that brides- or grooms-to-be create a special email just to give to wedding vendors. After the wedding is over, you can delete and forget about your account and rest easy knowing spam from bridal boutiques and florists isn't clogging up your main inbox.

But the wedding email tip opens up a world of possibilities. You can use disposable contact information for any major event in your life where you know you'll be handing out your information a lot—like narrowing down colleges, car shopping, house hunting, job hunting or preparing for a new baby. And you don't have to stop at an email address.

If you're going to be giving out your phone number a lot, sign up for a free Google Voice number. Set your Google Voice account to forward to your cell, and give out your new number to contacts and vendors. You can set it to do things like send calls straight to voicemail, or even ban phone numbers (like those scam honeymoon offers). Then when the wedding's over or the baby's born, change your Voice settings and enjoy the peace and quiet that comes with completely avoiding spam calls.

Or, use an app like Burner ($1.99, iOS) that lets you create several forwarding phone numbers (it even masks your outgoing number on others' caller IDs) and "burn" them for good with a single touch.

Have you ever used a throwaway email or phone number? Do you have any email tricks that helped you through a major event? Shre your stories in the comments!

(Images: Shutterstock, Gmail, Burner)

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