Depending on how long you have had an email account and how active you are with your account, you've probably seen your fair share of spam or unwanted emails. Like most e-mail users, you likely don't give junk mail or messages from senders you don't recognize a second glance before deleting them. However, on occasion you may encounter unwanted electronic mail that is not so easy to ignore (I. E. harassment), and you may feel compelled to find out the identity of the sender.
Due to the fact that the Internet enables users to maintain a certain amount of anonymity, some people feel they can get away with anything, such as spam, scams, and even online harassment via email. However, while it is easier to hide one's identity on the World Wide Web, those who wish to learn more about these nefarious characters can do so by simply searching the spammer's, scammer's or harasser's e-mail address.
How can you find the owner of an email address? There are two tracing methods available online that may prove useful to you:
1 - IP trace - Every computer has a unique IP (Internet Protocol) address assigned to it, and this address acts as the computer's ID. By entering the IP address of the email owner into an IP tracker query box on a website that provides this service, you can be provided with the geographical location of the computer (I. E. country, state, city, area code of telephone number, etc. ), the hostname, ISP (internet service provider) name, and more. The IP trace will not provide you with the email owner's identity, but you may find the other information useful, especially if you intend to file a complaint.
In order to find the IP address of the message sender, access their email message headers through the email client you are using, and look for four groups of numbers divided by dots encased in square brackets (I. E. [220.127.116.11]). The IP you are looking for should be located near the bottom of the headers, close to the senders e-mail address.
2 - Reverse email address lookup - Find a website that offers a reverse email search and enter the address into the provided search box. With a reverse lookup, conducting a search by email address is literally that easy. That said, it is in your best interest to run more than one search, as various websites will include different email subdomains (I. E. Google, Yahoo, aol, etc. ) in their directory list.
Thus, in order to find out information on the email owner (I. E. identity, demographics, location, etc. ), you will need to access a lookup that includes the email provider in their database. You should also keep in mind that you may need to pay a small fee to conduct a premium search if a free lookup is unsuccessful.
There are ways you can find out information on an email owner, so don't ever feel you should put up with frequent unwanted messages from individuals who have no qualms about invading your online privacy.
Lindsay has been writing about web applications for 4 years and is tracking the latest trends in web development. You can check out her latest project at http://www.reverseemaildetective.com