Time for change? How to easily change an email address

How long do you usually keep your car before trading it in?

How long since you upgraded your computer?

Have you had the same email address for over 10 years?

Maybe it’s time for a change.

Often I am asked about how to change an email address. Sometimes a client has been‘hacked,’ and their email and password have been compromised. Sometimes the amount of junk mail, or ‘Spam,’ becomes a relentless barrage that cannot be held back. There are several solutions to these dilemmas, including creating a stronger password, unsubscribing (when it is a legitimate site) and using junk mail filters.

Sometimes it is easier to start fresh with a new email address, and I will describe that process in this article. Depending on the email service that you’re using and how much effort you want to put into things, changing your email address can be either easy or difficult. More likely, it will be closer to the easy side if you plan and follow the steps reviewed here. By the way, there is no direct option of changing the email address in many of the popular free email services like Hotmail, Gmail or Yahoo. The best is to get a new email address and either forward messages from the old one or delete the previous account altogether.

It is a good idea to keep your current email active if creating a new one for usage. This will allow you to monitor the old account and check for any messages from senders not aware that your email has changed. As you would have guessed, I do not recommend deleting an email account which you’ve been operating for a few years. Why? Because it’s time consuming. First, all the people whom you know will have to be informed of the change; secondly, you’ll lose all the information including email messages, attachments and contacts; and finally, you may face horrendous problems if you’ve used that email address as the username or as the primary contact address at other services. The last point, especially, should not be taken lightly.

Next, you can decide on a new email provider, or you can reserve your own domain for email. There are several free services: Gmail (yourname@gmail.com), Apple’s iCloud(yourname@me.com) and Yahoo! (yourname@yahoo.com) are some of the largest. Another option is to get your own domain (www.yourname.com) and then you have a personal email address (you@yourname.com) that is unique and memorable. This can be done for around$30 per year.After you create the new account, you will need to send out an electronic ‘Change ofAddress’ notice. This should be simple and to the point, it will go to those friends, family and associates that you correspond with regularly, we will address other accounts later. You have probably received several such emails from your friends, this time it is you who will be sending it. Here is a simple template:

Subject: My New Email Address

Message Body: Effective immediately, my new email address will be example@example.com. Please copy this address and paste it into your address book, replacing my prior email address.



Important: Send this email only from your new email address, and make sure to put all the recipients into the BCC field to avoid sending your entire address book to everyone.

You now have a fresh, clean email account that is only known by those you shared it with. Continue to monitor your ‘old’ address for any stragglers that did not get the notice, and you can notify them of your new address as needed.

Updating your accounts

Rather than trying to sit down and remember all the places your email address is stored online, do it as you go. Fill out the change of address forms on sites you are registered with as you return to them, this will make the task less daunting. If you try to sit down and change all your emails on every site in one sitting, you will likely end up crying.

Just do it as you go and it will not seem like an insurmountable task.

One reason to keep the older email active is that you can use that when you need to fill out a form that requires an email address, this will help you keep the junk separate form the valid emails.You could also create a second new email address,often called an alias, which you could use only for forms and shopping, to help filter any resulting junk mail. Changing your email does not have to be a difficult process, and by following the steps listed it should be an easy endeavor. And when you do have that new, unblemished email account setup;enjoy the empty mailbox for a day or two before you notify anyone, and remember when times were simpler.

Jeff Bohr | Naples Mac Help 239.595.0482 | jeff@jeffbohr.com

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