Email Tracking

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Question: How do you find the country of origin of an email? Mehran

The IT Guy says:
I get some interesting email from some very distant locations. I keep getting copies of an email in Spanish for a shop in Santiago, Chile, which offers organ or accordion lessons via videoconferencing. Actually, this sounds like a great way to practice my Spanish and improve my accordion skills at the same time!

There are two ways to trace the country of origin for an email, or at least the computer system that sent it. Note that a mail server may be in one country while the user sending messages may be connected from anywhere. One way is to look at the last part of the address. There is often a two-letter suffix that indicates the country where the mail server lives. For example, ".uk" means United Kingdom, and ".cl" means Chile. To see a table of all the country codes, go to "Index by TLD code".

The other way is to look at the route the email traveled. When you have the email open, look for an option in your email program that says something like "View Header" or "View Internet Header." It might be under the menu items Options, View, or some other slightly more obscure spot. When you select that choice, you will see a bunch of very messy-looking text displayed at the top of your email. It lists all the different places the message traveled en route from the sender to you, and somewhere near the bottom of the list you will find something that says "Received from:". (There may be more than one—pick the one furthest down the list.) It will be followed sometimes by a web address and a number, or just a number. In either case, the number will look like 69.57.88.72. Take that number and go to "IP2 Location". You can enter the number and it will give you the city, state, and country where the message originated!

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