About Us

General

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  • What is Boxbe?

    Boxbe is a service that helps minimize email overload. It's an email filtering tool that works with your existing inbox.

  • How does Boxbe work?

    When you sign up for a Boxbe account, you easily set up a guest list that specifies who can reach you. New senders can be added to the guest list with a simple approval step.

  • Does Boxbe work with any email service?

    Boxbe works directly with Yahoo! Mail and Microsoft Outlook.

    You can also use Boxbe as a Public Email Address (yourname@boxbe.com); the Public Email Address will forward to any email address.

  • What about [some other service we haven't named]?

    If you use another email client or service you would like us to consider, or you'd like us to keep you posted on our next releases, just email us at feedback@boxbe.com.

  • What prevents people from sending me messages I don't want?

    Mail will only be delivered to your inbox under conditions you control and Boxbe enforces on your behalf. Mail is delivered if:

    • you have added the sender or the domain (you can upload the approved emails from your address book, automatically add senders based on emails you have received and sent, or manually add them easily), or
    • the sender passes a simple robot-proof test
  • I want to use Boxbe. What are the requirements?

    You must be at least 13 years old, and you must have an existing email account. See our Terms of Service for the details.

  • How can I close my Boxbe account?

    If you're not happy with the Boxbe service or need to close your account for any other reason, simply email us at support@boxbe.com and we'll close your account (a brief description of why you'd like to cancel is greatly appreciated). We try to respond to inquiries within 24 hours Monday through Friday. You can also simply disable screening on your Yahoo account if you'd prefer.

  • Boxbe is currently free. Will Boxbe remain free?

    We are committed to providing a free service. However, Boxbe is a for-profit company with employees, costs and investors, so eventually our services must be self-supporting and profit-generating.

    We are considering various approaches for the longer term. For example, we might introduce extensions that would carry a small monthly or yearly fee. Another approach would be to introduce limited advertising, in which case we'd likely offer an ad-free version, but for a monthly fee.

    And a third approach would be to allow you to charge senders to send you mail, with Boxbe receiving a share of the proceeds. You could allow anyone to mail you for free, but you could also set your own price - either a single overall price, or different prices for different senders.

    Boxbe's long-term vision is a world where you have significant control over the messages you receive, regardless of who they come from. Our immediate focus is making Boxbe helpful and easy to use. Your feedback is always welcome.

Guest List

  • What is a Boxbe Guest List?

    A guest list is all of the email addresses you have approved to email you. Each Boxbe user can set up a guest list. Your guest list helps you build and manage who you receive emails from and makes sure that wanted messages are quickly delivered.

  • Will my friends be required to sign up?

    No, because your friends will have already been pre-approved as part of the process when you are signing up for a Boxbe account.

  • What happens when my friends try to send an email to me?

    If you have added your friends and family to your Guest List, the email will reach you as it would without Boxbe's service.

    The people you have not pre-approved receive an invitation to join your Guest List. The invitation lets the sender take a simple test to confirm they are not a spambot. Once a sender receives an invitation and types in the captcha, the email is delivered. The test is similar to the ones used on websites like Ticketmaster, PayPal or Yahoo (these are called CAPTCHAs - graphic words that a computer cannot read automatically).

  • Why can't users just rely on their spam filters?

    We wouldn't be talking today if spam filters did what they were meant to. Spam filters are imperfect: the unwanted emails easily evade ISPs and the senders are constantly getting better at defeating them, despite the investment in technology solutions to deal with the problem. And we are all paying for it, with cluttered inboxes, and inevitably through the costs that ISPs incur and pass onto us via DSL and cable bills.

Waiting List & Junk Rating

  • What is the Boxbe Waiting List?

    The Boxbe Waiting List is where all emails from senders you have not approved arrive. You can view this list at any time. For Yahoo and Outlook users, the Boxbe Waiting list is a folder in their folder list. For other users, it's on the Boxbe website.

  • What is the Boxbe Junk Rating?

    Boxbe's "junk rating" is a way to make sifting through your Waiting List easier. We've rated messages on a scale of one through ten based on what we think is more or less likely to be email that you would want. Messages are color coded like a traffic light for quick scanning, so when you are busy you can focus on the ones less likely to be spam.

    • Green: least likely to be junk mail. Rating 1 - 3.
    • Yellow: somewhat likely to be junk mail. Rating 4 - 7.
    • Red: most likely junk mail. Rating 8 - 10.
  • What if I've got messages that aren't spam that have high score?

    As no spam scoring software is perfect (!!), the junk rating numbers are to be used as a guide to help you get through your Waiting List more quickly. However, like any guide, use your own judgment when managing your Waiting List.

  • How long are messages held in the Waiting List?

    30 days. If you do not take any action to forward, approve or delete a message in your Waiting List, and if the sender does not take the test, the message will be deleted from the Waiting List 30 days after it was received.

  • Why are some messages in my Waiting List from people that I have approved?

    This is because someone has tried to fake your identity or the identity of someone you know. This is called "spoofing." Boxbe uses sophisticated scanning to scrutinize the message's headers and sender information using new authentication standards such as DKIM (Domain Keys Identified Mail) and SPF (Sender Policy Framework). Major ISPs, online services, and businesses are adopting these standards to ensure that spoofers can be detected. When an email that appears to be from someone you know based on their "Prettyname" (the name you see in your inbox) is in your Boxbe Waiting List, it is because it flunked one of the authentication tests. Check it carefully as odds are it is not actually from that person but masquerading as if it is.

Boxbe for Yahoo! Mail

Setup

Day to Day Usage

  • How do I approve new email addresses to my Guest List?

    There are two ways to approve new people to your Guest List. First, if a message from someone you have not approved is in your Waiting List, merely click "Add guest email address to your Guest List" in the message itself.

    Alternatively, you can go to your Guest List on the Boxbe site and pre-approve anyone you like.

  • Can I automatically approve people I email?

    Yes. This option is pre-selected for you as we anticipate this is how most people would like to use our service.

    If you don't want to automatically approve people that you email, you can deselect this option on the Boxbe website.

    NOTE: If you do this, anyone you email that is not on your Guest List must take the robot-proof test to email you back.

  • What happens if the sender isn't pre-approved?

    Boxbe holds these messages in your Waiting List folder in Yahoo! Mail. The sender is notified that their message hasn't been delivered and they are given instructions as to how to complete delivery, except for really spammy messages that originally arrived in the Yahoo! Mail spam folder. These senders are not sent invitations to join your guest list to avoid creating email waste.

  • Can I see messages that are not delivered to my inbox?

    Yes. All messages from uninvited guests can be viewed in your Waiting List. You can read messages that are in your Waiting List and choose to allow the sender to continue sending messages by clicking "Add guest email address to my Guest List."

  • Why do all the messages in my Waiting List have a number in the Subject Line?

    All messages in your Waiting List are assigned a Junk Score rating. We determine how likely the message is to be spam.

    Email assigned a Junk Score of 1 is least likely to be spam and 10 is most likely to be spam.

    • Rating 1-3: least likely to be junk mail.
    • Rating 4-7: somewhat likely to be junk mail.
    • Rating 8-10: most likely junk mail.

    To quickly go through your Waiting List, you can easily sort by subject to find messages from people you may have meant to add to your Guest List.

  • Do you ever delete messages from the Waiting List?

    Yes. We remove messages from the Waiting List on a rolling 30 day basis.

  • Should I use Boxbe for Yahoo! Mail with a POP email client?

    No. Currently, if you use a POP client such as Thunderbird, Outlook Express, Apple Mail, Entourage, Eudora or some other email client, Boxbe for Yahoo! Mail will not work properly.

    Outlook users can use our plugin for Outlook, which will work with any email account viewed with Outlook.

Known issues

Boxbe for Outlook

Setup

  • How do I set up Boxbe for Outlook?

    If you already have a Boxbe account, download the plug-in for Boxbe here. If you do not have a Boxbe account, start by registering for Boxbe, and then follow the instructions to download the plug in. Registering for Boxbe takes about 3-4 minutes. Downloading the plug-in about the same, unless you do not have some required Microsoft components, (.Net libraries) then it's about 10 minutes. Make sure all other applications are closed (including Microsoft Office and Outlook) when you install the Boxbe Outlook plug-in.

  • What happens after I sign up and download the plug-in?

    When you open Outlook you will see a small Boxbe toolbar just below the usual Microsoft Outlook toolbars. Click on Boxbe Settings in the toolbar, and choose "Create/Update Guest List" so you can set up your Guest List and start using Boxbe for Outlook. Boxbe for Outlook will let you scan your contacts and any email folders you like to automatically build your Guest List.

  • Does Boxbe look through Outlook's Spam folder?

    Yes. We understand that most spam filters aren't perfect. Messages from senders on your Guest List that mistakenly end up in your Outlook Junk E-mail folder are rescued and moved to your inbox. All other messages in the spam folder are moved to the Waiting List and receive a Boxbe Junk Score.

  • Do you check all the email in my inbox?

    We check all the unread messages in your inbox for all the email addresses you receive in Outlook. If you have read the message already, we do not check the message against your Guest List.

  • What if I run Outlook on more than one computer?

    It is not a problem if you install the Boxbe for Outlook plug-in on each computer. If Boxbe is installed and the Outlook software on both machines (say a home or business desktop and a portable pc) screens the same inbox, Boxbe makes sure all your policies are up to date on all your instances of Outlook. If you add someone to your Guest List while using one computer, next time you use Outlook on the other computer, Boxbe will update and synchronize any changes and updates.

  • What if I leave outlook running on a computer at home or in my office and then open outlook on a second computer such as my portable?

    Boxbe will keep them in sync as long as they both have the Outlook plug-in installed and running.

Day to Day Usage

  • How do I approve new email addresses to my Guest List?

    There are two ways to approve new people to your Guest List. First, if a message from someone you have not approved is in your Waiting List, merely click "Approve Sender" or "Approve Domain" on the Boxbe toolbar.

    Alternatively, you can go to your Guest List on the Boxbe site and pre-approve anyone you like.

  • Can I automatically approve people I email?

    Yes. When you set up Boxbe for Outlook, simply check the "sent mail" folder and all the other folders containing emails from people you want to automatically approve. The Sent email folder is pre selected for you as we anticipate this is how most people would like to use our service. You can also do another scan to reconstruct your guest list any time you like.

    If you don't want to automatically approve people that you email, you can deselect this folder.

    NOTE: If you do this, anyone you email that is not on your Guest List must take a robot-proof test to email you back.

  • What happens if the sender isn't pre-approved?

    Boxbe holds these messages in your Boxbe Waiting List folder in Outlook. For each message, the sender is notified that their message hasn't been delivered and they are given instructions as to how to complete delivery.

  • Can I see messages that are not delivered to my inbox?

    Yes. All messages from uninvited guests can be viewed in your Waiting List. You can read messages that are in your Waiting List and choose to allow the sender to continue sending messages by clicking the "Approve Sender" button in the Boxbe toolbar in Outlook.

  • Why do all the messages in my Waiting List have a number to the left of the sender when I look at all the envelopes?

    All messages in your Waiting List are assigned a Junk Score rating. We determine how likely the message is to be spam.

    Email assigned a Junk Score of 1 is least likely to be spam and 10 is most likely to be spam.

    • Rating 1-3: least likely to be junk mail.
    • Rating 4-7: somewhat likely to be junk mail.
    • Rating 8-10: most likely junk mail.

    To quickly go through your Waiting List, you can easily sort by Name, Subject, Date or Junk score to find messages from people you may have meant to add to your Guest List.

  • Do you ever delete messages from the Waiting List?

    Yes. We remove messages from the Waiting List on a rolling 30 day basis.

  • What if I use Outlook for multiple emails?

    Boxbe will screen all the emails in your inbox based on the guest list and settings you select. If you use POP, all the spam and questionable emails will go to the same Boxbe Waiting List folder, where they will be assigned a Junk Score from 1 to 10 to help you sort through them quickly. If you have IMAP email addresses, each IMAP address will have its own Boxbe Waiting List folder.

  • What about Internal Email from my corporate Exchange server?

    Email that originates within your company Exchange domain and never travels across the internet is not screened by Boxbe. These messages are allowed access to your inbox without scoring or filtering.

Boxbe as a Public Email Address

  • What is a Public Email Address?

    A public email address is an email address you can publish, post, or give out online. It is an email address you can make "public."

    You might think of it as a "one-way" email address, where senders can send to you and you decide which messages are forwarded to your real address and appear in your inbox.

  • What are the benefits of having a Public Email Address?

    You can be reached more easily by those who don't have your private email address, and you have an address that you can share online without concern. It helps you maintain your privacy.

  • Where should I use my Public Email Address?

    You can use your public email address in many places:

    • use it on your blog
    • put it in your public profiles on MySpace, Facebook or LinkedIn or other online communities
    • provide it when you post to a discussion group or community site
    • give it to vendors when you buy things online
    • use it when you sign up to receive information
    • list it as your contact address in public directories
  • How do I read the mail sent to my Public Email Address?

    Boxbe forwards email sent to your public email address to your private email address where you currently read your mail. For example, if your email address is "randy.stewart@gmail.com" and your public email address is "randy@boxbe.com", when someone sends email to "randy@boxbe.com" you can read it at Gmail.

Boxbe for Gmail