GMAIL tip to determine if your email is being sold

I have talked for years about using a "throw away" email address.  This is a free email address that you give to companies and/or what-not just in case...

This is not the normal email address that you give to your friends or family members.

A lot of people use Yahoo free email or Google free email.  There are several others that could be used, but these two are the most well known.

Recently, I learned that GMAIL understands why you are concerned and allows this little trick to work.

YAHOO also understands, but unless you use the "PLUS" version (you pay $19.99 a year for it) the trick will not work.

Anyway, it goes like this:

You go to a website and the website requires you to register for a free log-in.  You know the drill.  You have to answer a series of questions in order to get a log in.  (user name and password)  This log-in then allows you to get into the website.  One of the question you must answer is  WHAT IS YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS?

It could be a travel website

could be a RV website

could be for downloading free EBooks, recipes, coupons or sewing patterns

could be a website you go to in order to buy things for Christmas or birthdays

it could be any website that you think is normal or legitimate

Now most of us would ask ourselves, why would they give us a free log-in?  How do they make money?  But most of us say, "I really want into this website" and they said they would not sell my address!

The short answer is ADVERTISERS!!  Or maybe they do "sell" your address even though they said they would not.


Let's say your email address is and you are signing up for a site at .  Normally you would put in the box where they asked you to.  But with GMAIL you can put .

Now, if you get any Gmail with the user name that is not from the freestuff website, you know your email address has been sold.

Use the plus sign ( + ) after your name and before the @ sign.  In Yahoo Plus, you would use the dash sign ( - ).

I tried this trick with my COX account.  It didn't work!



If you know of any other email services that do something like this, let me know.