Email Tracing

Question: Can your Email address be traced if you post an anonymous post to a Web site message board? Is there any way it can come back to you?

The IT Guy says:
Usually when you post something to a Website, a record of the computer IP address you were using at the time is left on the server where you made the post. Depending on the country where the computer is located, it is possible for law enforcement officials to obtain a court order to view Internet Service Provider (ISP) records that document user IP addresses and identify the home where the computer was used to make that Website message board post.

These records can trace the posting to a particular home network but may not be able to identify which computer on that home network (if more than one computer is set up to access the Internet via a high-speed connection) was used. If, during the same Internet session, the Web user accessed his/her Email account either via a Webmail interface or a POP client software program (like Outlook or Entourage) then it would be likely that law enforcement personnel could identify an Email address which is owned/used by the same person who posted a message to a Website message board.

A hacker who has successfully installed a packet sniffer on your home network or home computer could also obtain this information. Packet sniffers can capture all incoming and outgoing “packets” of Internet information, which could include message board postings as well as Email communications. It is very important that users take steps to secure their home computers and home networks to protect themselves against hacker attacks that can include identify theft as well as harassment.

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