Yes, your emails are being tracked. Here’s how to stop it.

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Here’s something you might want to think about next time you check your email: chances are, at least some of your messages are being tracked.

From how many times you open a message, the time of day, and even what city you’re in, the very act of reading an email can send a surprising amount of data back to the sender, even if you never respond. 

That unsettling fact was recently thrust back into the spotlight thanks to a much-hyped email startup called Superhuman. The $30/month invite-only email software beloved by Silicon Valley VCs and “inbox zero” adherents is so hyped, there’s currently a waiting list more than 180,000 people long, according to The New York Times.

Then Mike Davidson, a VP at design platform Invision, pointed out that the email app had originally enabled its users to track who is opening their emails by default. The feature, which Superhuman dubbed “read receipts,” allows message senders to see exactly when their messages are opened, what kind of device recipients are using, and where they are. And unlike, say, iMessage read receipts, which are opt-in, Superhuman’s feature is enabled by default.

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