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Thursday, January 21, 2010

HTML Email

Updated 2009-11-25
Outlook and other mail programs have implemented most of what I previously recommended and the new spam/junk filters really help out. However, I would still view email in plain text because some junk still gets through.

Updated 2002-01-07
There is a way to at least stop HTML email from attacking you. See Secure Emailunder the How To Demos for details and instructions. The instructions protect you from all the viruses I have seen being generated by this HTML email… without having virus protection software.

Published 2001-02-24

This stuff really sucks! It is so intrusive and there is no way to turn it off in Microsoft Outlook. Before you had to worry about attachments in your email… now you have to worry about your email. Companies are sending their website to you. With non-HTML email you were safe(except attachments)… with HTML email anybody can tell if email was sent  to a valid email address, whether you read the email and they can get your IP address. Just about everything they could detect in the browser. All very easily. They can even use ActiveX, Java and JavaScript to extend what they can do. With this information they know who you are and can then track your movement in the site and relate that to you specifically. THIS IS NOT GOOD!
I find that 95% of my HTML email is some form of junk mail. How many people do you talk to that use HTML instead of simple text for email? Other than business ads not many?
SPAM networks can use HTML email to confirm email addresses are valid much easier. Once your email ID is on their network(and validated) you will see even more junk mail.
It was headache enough with attachments and all the SPAM you had to wade through… now you have to worry about what that SPAM email is doing.

How do you stop it?

I haven’t figured out a way yet. Anybody got any ideas. It should be simple for Microsoft to put one of the filter options as “content type” for message rules. Then we could do this easily. Until then I create new rules and keep trashing stuff.
On a side note all this HTML email is making it difficult for companies that don’t SPAM you. Now I have to compete with people that intrude on your life with this HTML email as well as other web sites.
Do us all a favor and yell at Microsoft. This is something that can easily be fixed.

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