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Google Checkout aliases

The 'Privacy' option at Google Checkout does more than you might expect or want.

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At Google Checkout (Google's online payment option) you'll see an option like this:

'Keep my email address confidential. Google will forward all email from <merchant> to <your email address>'.

This option creates an email alias (eg 'some_long_string_of_letters_and_numbers@checkout.google.com' ) which is re-directed to your normal email address. Google does this so you can detect unwanted marketing messages from an online seller and keep your 'real' email address confidential.

This option might be what you intend, but it means that your new Google Checkout order creates another email alias for you. We've had many ebook customers tick that box then get horribly confused about how to get their order because the consequences of the 'Keep my email address confidential' option were not clear. In addition the semi-random email alias is quite long, some people have trouble typing in (or copying) such a long address.

It's an interesting idea from Google but we feel it needs to be explained better so customers know what they are getting into.

Article posted: Wednesday, 11 April 2007

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