Soycow: E-mail Obfuscation

E-mail Obfuscation:

Trillions of tiny starving spam-bots desperately want you to subtract inches from one part of your body while adding inches to another part of your body.

A 2-layered defense is your best bet against spam-bots:

  1. Obfuscate your e-mail address on your website.
  2. Only give out temporary e-mail addresses on your website.

The goal of the first layer of defense is to completely hide your e-mail address from spam-bots, while at the same time allowing your human-audience access. gives you more info and a link to a great e-mail obfuscation tool.

Sooner or later, however, spam-bots are going to figure out how to harvest even the most protected e-mail addresses. Afterall, if a human can see your e-mail address, then a computer can probably figure it out as well. That's why a second layer of defense is necessary:

  1. Purchase your own domain from a company that allows you to have an unlimited number of e-mail forwards (you shouldn't pay more than about $35 a year).
  2. Pick an e-mail address which is suitable for putting on your website (e.g., Note: don't bother putting that e-mail address on any business cards.
  3. Set up that e-mail address (e.g., to be forwarded to your real e-mail address.
  4. Put that e-mail address on your web site (using any layer 1 obfuscation tricks you want).

If you're lucky, you can stop there, but in most cases your website's e-mail address will eventually be harvested and distributed to spammers. Once that happens, just make up a new e-mail forwarding address (back to step 2., above), and disable the old harvested one. Repeat as necessary.

Add a comment