Many people are unaware of email tracking and how to stop it, but that is about to change as this is WiseGuys all you need to know guide on email tracking.
So what is Email tracking?
Many of us receive multiple promotional emails daily from multiple different companies.
From offers and discounts on products such as phones to vacation and package holiday deals if a company has your email address they will send marketing emails to you.
This may not sound like a bad thing, and for many people it’s not, however for some, opening these emails will allow the company who sent it access to certain private information about them.
You may only click on the email for a matter of seconds, but within that time the company may have been able to gain access to your IP address, as well as what time you accessed the email and how long you had it open.
It is done in order for companies to gain the information they need to target you better as a potential buyer and get you more engaged with their product or service.
So how is it done?
Most email tracking is invisible and takes place under the radar so that potential customers are completely unaware of it happening.
Companies use tracking pixels which tend to be small 1×1 invisible images inserted into the header, footer, or body of the email to gain access to the information they want.
Most of the time you will not be able to see these images but when you open the email, the pixels will load and send information back to the company.
So what can I do to stop it from happening to me?
This feature will not set up automatically so you will have to manually set it up, but it will be worth doing to protect your privacy.
Once the update has been realised, to set it up simply go to Settings, Mail, Privacy Protection, and toggle on Protect Mail Activity.
This will stop the pixels from being able to send data back to companies.
In Gmail settings, under the image section, there is an option that states, ‘Ask Before Displaying External Images’.
By turning this on, it will stop images from automatically loading within your emails.
If the image is unable to load then the data will not be sent to the sender.
Also, Gmail by proxy since 2013 has had a feature put in place that in most cases will keep your IP address hidden and protected.
There are certain Chrome and firefox add ons that you can download that will help protect your privacy within your emails.
Some highly recommended ones are Ugly Email, ProtonMail, DuckDuckGo, and Cloudflare’s WARP app.
Some are free to use and others are not.
For more information or advice on how to protect your privacy contact us on 0808 123 2820.