This is Part Three in my series on monitoring and tagging emails and web visits.
In yesterday’s post, I wrote about a fantastic, low cost product for monitoring email, called MSGTAG. I really enjoyed working with MSGTAG, but unfortunately it is not compatible with MS Exchange, a big drawback for most of us corporate email users. So I needed another solution.
I came across a Website called www.readnotify.com. Unlike MSGTAG, readnotify operates as a service, instead of an application. The tagging for Readnotify is done from a centralized email server, not at the client PC. This has the advantage of being email server, or client PC agnostic.
Instead of sending an email to email@example.com you now send the message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Instead of going directly to Joe Smith’s email server, the message makes a pit stop at readnotify.com, where it gets tagged and logged and forwarded to the correct address.
If it sounds like a pain to add the .readnotify suffix, there are some options available to you. Readnotify has plugins that operate with Outlook and many Webmail programs like Yahoo and Hotmail. Myself, I loaded the client, but because of the selective way I personally use the product, have reverted back to using the suffix. (If I’m not too lazy, I might just set up a hot key.)
Readnotify has a web based interface that controls setup preferences and also provides an ongoing status log of mails recieved and forwarded. It even provides a Mapquest map of the probable site receiving the email.
Readnotify also provides a way to certify and timestamp messages, so that you have proof that a certain email was sent at a certain time. It also provides a way to provide encrypted email.
Finally, one of the neat features of Readnotify is the ability to send self-destructing messages. A recipient is sent to a website to view a message that destructs after a set period of time. No record is kept.
Because it is a service, readnotify.com does cost a bit more than MSGTag. If I didn’t have the problem with Exchange, I probably would haven’t purchased readnotify.com, but now that I have, I find value that the value I get from the timestamps exceeds the difference in the cost of the service.
Note: One of my readers, Idan, sent me some info on another program, MailInfo. I haven’t used it, but it does look worth evaluating, if this type of tagging interests you.