1. What was the inspiration behind starting EmailOnDeck?
We feel that the internet is becoming a place where every site seems to be demanding your personal information just to access the site. We still believe that the internet is like your local library: what you research and learn about online is nobody's business but your own. More practically, there's an issue of providing your personal email address to a web site you've just visited for the first time. A common concern is: "What will this website do with my personal email if I give it to them?" Websites frequently sell your email address, and ultimately that can lead to one receiving SPAM which could include viruses and phishing emails. We built this service in hopes of allowing one to help retain and protect their online privacy.
2. What sets this project apart from other free email providers?
EmailOnDeck proactively focuses on providing you with temporary emails that work. With access to a large domain pool, EmailOnDeck can create a greater variety of temporary email address increasing the difficulty of advertisers tracking you online. EmailOnDeck also provides you with your own private temporary email inbox; it is not a public inbox for all to view. Finally, once you are done with your temporary email address, it will automatically be securely wiped and all emails securely erased in order to ensure your privacy.
3. When are the times that someone might want to use a temporary email, instead of something like a "backup" email aside from their primary one?
Any website that asks for your email before letting you visit or view their site. This is a great way to protect yourself from untrustworthy sites. Once you get comfortable with a website, then you can decide if you would like to provide your personal email address to them.
Interestingly, though, I actually like to point out when it's not a good time to use a temporary email address. If you're going to be giving a company your credit card number or mailing address, using a temporary email can actually make things more difficult. First of all, they have your personal information, so you're not really being much more private. Secondly, if the company needs to send you an email to confirm your purchase or subscription in a few months, you would no longer have access to that temporary email.
4. How do you keep your service available for free?
Since we're constantly securely wiping emails, our storage costs are very low. We do place non-intrusive ads on certain pages of the web site. We also have plans to provide a paid "pro" version that's ad-free and provides more convenient features. More on that soon...
5. In addition to using a temporary email address, what else do people need to do to protect their privacy when using their computers, tablets, and phones?