How To Prevent Email Tracking?

How To Prevent Email Tracking?

For some time there has been the possibility for those who send e-mails for marketing purposes to understand whether the user opens the message sent to them or not: in this article, we explain how to protect the privacy of personal data by preventing tracking via email. 

An E-mail has evolved over the years, and from simple plain text messages, it is now possible to send attachments of various types and integrate elements into the body of the message to understand what you do while you are inside your inbox.

In 2018, Princeton University researchers analyzed around 1,000 email advertisements and found that 70% of messages contained advertising trackers, which automatically download items such as invisible images that not only inform the sender when the message was opened and how many. times, but it also transfers personal data (such as e-mail address) into the search string. This type of tracker allows, among other things, the sender to identify your IP address, obtain the location in an approximate way, and “targeting” even more advertisements.

By taking advantage of invisible images integrated into messages, it is possible, for example, to determine which topics and types of messages (for example, with or without emoji) on which users are most likely to click. Furthermore, advertising trackers can store browser cookies to “recognize” you on other sites that have nothing to do with the subject of the email.

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How To Block Email Tracking

And there are various ways to protect yourself against email tracking mechanisms. Google, for example, allows you to disable automatic image loading, as The Verge notes. If you use Gmail you can click on the Settings icon (the cogwheel icon), go to the “General” section and – in the “Images” section select “Ask before viewing external images” and save the settings (click on 

“Save changes” at the bottom).

Keep in mind that, by deactivating the option in question, various functions related to “dynamic emails” or messages with interactive content are also deactivated. Dynamic emails (sometimes called AMPs) allow you to interact with dynamic emails in the same way as you would a website; For example, you can respond to an event invitation or comments in a Google document without leaving Gmail.

Disable Image Upload In The Mac OS Mail App

Even in the mac OS Mail app, you can turn off automatic image loading. Open Mail from the “Mail” menu, select “Preferences”, go to the “View” section, and from here remove the checkmark from the “Load Content” option.

Disable Image Upload In The iOS Mail App

Even in the iOS Mail app, you can disable automatic image upload. On the iPhone, you need to open Settings> Mail and disable the “Upload remote images” option in the “Messages” section.

In the most recent versions of Gmail for iOS, there is a specific setting for blocking the automatic loading of images Settings> account name  > Images> Always show external images (activate the option “Ask before viewing external images).

E-mail applications such as Thunderbird automatically disable automatic image loading. Almost all the various clients for managing emails offer in the Preferences the possibility, to those who wish, to disable images.

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