ClicVU, New York, a provider of Web advertising services, debuted a service last week that allows consumers to avoid unsolicited e-mails by letting them send and receive messages without having to reveal their e-mail addresses.
The service, Spamex, creates anonymous e-mail addresses that people can use to have online information — such as newsletters, sweepstakes entries or transactions — forwarded to their legitimate e-mail addresses. When users begin to receive unsolicited e-mails, they can disable that Spamex e-mail address and create a new one, the company said.
“The strength of the service is that as soon as you start receiving something unsolicited, you know that that one address has been compromised,” said Justin Greene, co-CEO of ClicVU. “Once you know that, you can just cut it off.”
Spamex allows consumers to create five active e-mail addresses for free, said Michael Cassara, co-CEO of ClicVU. Users can sign up for more accounts, from 15 to 500, at costs ranging from $14.95 to $49.95, he said.
The company also offers consumers a 20 percent discount if they opt in to include banner ads in their accounts.
Cassara said the e-mails are delivered to users' real e-mail addresses with text at the top of the message notifying them that they have received a message at that particular Spamex account. The e-mails also provide users with a link to disable the e-mail address — which is a Spamex-generated, random number that precedes @spamex.com — if the message was unsolicited.
Meanwhile, Greene said legitimate online marketers should not be affected by the service, as long as the user opted in to receive a marketer's e-mail offer.
“If somebody uses a Spamex account to subscribe to something and they're receiving messages they want to get, they're going to receive the message,” Greene said. “It only enables the user to not get the messages they do not want.”