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Gmail can now tell senders when a recipient opens an email – and even reveal where they were

When an email is read, a popup notification appears in the corner of the sender's inbox to tell them which email has been read, by whom, and on what device, pictured in this promotional image. An eye icon on the right-hand side of the email in the inbox will also turn green

When an email is read, a popup notification appears in the corner of the sender’s inbox to tell them which email has been read, by whom, and on what device, pictured in this promotional image. An eye icon on the right-hand side of the email in the inbox will also turn green

  • The plugin was created by San Francisco-based firm Streak

  • It’s aimed at marketing professionals, but can be used by any Gmail users

  • Streak tracks details each time an email is sent, and subsequently opened

  • It reveals the name and device details of the person who opened the email

  • The system can also reveal the reader’s name and location details

  • Streak can even tell senders how many times a person has read an email

If ‘read receipts’ on emails weren’t annoying enough, a San Francisco-based firm has taken the art of tracking emails to the next level.

The Streak plugin lets Gmail account holders monitor which of their sent items have been opened, who opened them, the exact time they were opened and how many times those emails have been viewed since.

It also reveals details about the device used to read the email, and even the reader’s approximate location.

Streak is aimed at sales and marketing professionals, and the company calls it a ‘Customer Relationship Manager (CRM) in your inbox.’

However, the plugin can be installed by anyone using Gmail on Google Chrome and Safari.

Aside from tracking emails, the plugin can also track stories and keywords, and keep track of bookings made as part of a wedding or other event.

Once installed, users can set Streak’s Email Tracking function to be enabled by default and each time they send an email, Streak will automatically track it.

The feature can also be disabled at any time.

When an email is read, a popup notification appears in the corner of the sender’s inbox to tell them which email has been read, by whom, and on what device.

An eye icon on the right-hand side of the email in the inbox will also turn green and hovering over it will reveal how many times the email has been read.

Clicking this icon then opens a sidebar, and under ‘more details’, senders can see the exact time it was opened and the location plotted on an interactive Google map.

At no point is the reader of the email informed that they have been tracked.Once installed, users can set Streak's Email Tracking function to be enabled by default. Users know the email is being tracked when the eye icon is orange, highlighted. The feature can also be disabled. However, at no point is the reader of the email informed that they have been tracked

Once installed, users can set Streak’s Email Tracking function to be enabled by default. Users know the email is being tracked when the eye icon is orange, highlighted. The feature can also be disabled. However, at no point is the reader of the email informed that they have been tracked

Streak doesn’t explain exactly how it is able to track a reader’s location and device details and has not yet responded to a request for comment.

However, similar services work by attaching images to emails that are stored on an external server.

When an email is opened, a request is made to the server to download the image and in the process of this request, the IP address is revealed. This address can then be used to locate the user.

In tests carried out by MailOnline, the service was not able to pinpoint a precise location, but it was able to identify the general area within London.

Meanwhile, tests carried out by PJ Vogt from OnTheMedia located the reader of his email to within about five minutes of their exact location in New York. 

Vogt advises that to avoid being tracked, users would need to stop images being automatically loaded in an email client. He also claims different clients offer different levels of protection.

Streak only lets users track 200 emails a month for free before charging a premium for extra emails. 

HOW CAN EMAIL PROVIDERS TRACK THE DETAILS OF READERS?

Streak doesn’t explain exactly how it is able to track a reader’s location and device details and has not yet responded to a request for comment.

However, similar services work by attaching images to emails that are stored on an external server.

When an email is opened, a request is made to the server to download the image and in the process of this request, the IP address is revealed. This address can then be used to locate the user.

During tests , the service was not able to pinpoint a precise location, but it was able to identify the general area. 

 

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2557576/Gmail-tells-senders-recipient-opens-email-reveals-were.html#ixzz2tAuh7Bhf
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Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2557576/Gmail-tells-senders-recipient-opens-email-reveals-were.html#ixzz2tAuSuirS
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