If you want to find all accounts linked to an email address you’ve come to the right place.
In fact, this is one of the most common questions we’ve received since we started helping individuals protect their online privacy and reputation.
And it makes complete sense.
The average person has registered accounts on dozens of websites that are all linked to their primary email address. And a lot of them aren’t even being used.
This poses a major problem if you value your personal information and don’t want it to be accessed by others (we’ll explain why in a second).
But here’s the problem:
It’s a huge pain to figure out all the websites you’ve joined or had an account with. And there’s no perfect solution.
So where do you start?
Why This Is Important
Before we get into how you can find all the accounts linked to your email address, let’s quickly go over what makes doing this so important.
The reason we need to explain this is very simple.
Most people don’t realize just how risky it is to have multiple unused accounts spread out across the web. They might have a general idea (which is why they want a list of their accounts in the first place) but they aren’t very concerned.
Then this happens.
They discover that finding what accounts are linked to their email address is a little tricker than anticipated. They either have to spend some time setting things up on their own or use a tool (and some tools might not be trustworthy).
So they stop and let their unused accounts continue to exist on the web.
That’s why understanding the potential risk is so important. If everyone was aware of this, no one would give up so quickly.
And what makes it so risky in the first place?
As you’ve probably noticed, internet privacy has become more and more scarce with each passing year. An increase in data breaches and hacks means that even the most reputable of companies can accidentally give away your data.
This means it’s smart to minimize your exposure when it comes to your accounts online. The more you have, the greater chance there is of your data being compromised.
Ideally, you should only have accounts and give access to websites that you use regularly and get significant value from. But it’s highly unlikely that is the case.
So here you are.
How To Find All Accounts Linked To Your Email Address
Here’s a quick summary of the process you’ll use:
- Log in to your email address
- Click “Manage third-party access”
- Remove anything you don’t want
- Search your emails for subject lines associated with account creation
- Make a list of these sites and delete or reach out to remove the unwanted accounts
This is what you’ll do if you want to find all accounts linked to an email address and get rid of them manually. Like we hinted at earlier, it will take a bit of time.
We’re currently developing a tool that can do most of the legwork for you (and you can try it for free). When that’s ready we’ll update this post.
Now let’s go through the process in detail.
Dealing With Apps Connected To Your Email Address
This is the logical place to start because it’s quick and can kickstart your list of linked accounts that you might want to delete later on.
Accounts that are connected to your email have the ability to access some of your data. What’s accessible varies based on the account, but it can be sensitive in nature.
So here’s where to start:
Visit your security page and look for the section that says “Third-party apps with account access”
Once you’ve found it click on the “Manage third-party access” link. This will take you to the dashboard where you can see accounts linked to your email address.
There will be three sections that break down what accounts have access. Take some time to think about what you want to get rid of.
You might see some sites that make your life significantly easier by being linked to your email. In this case, it’s up to you if the convenience is worth the risk.
Note: If you use other email service providers like Outlook or Yahoo you can find these options in a similarly-labeled area within their privacy settings.
Search Your Emails
This is where things become much less straightforward. But if you want to find out what sites your email address is registered to, it’s necessary.
The first thing to point out is there isn’t a perfect solution for this. Searching your emails is the best option, but it’s not foolproof.
This means there’s always a chance that an account will slip through the cracks. It’s just the way it is.
Now let’s get started.
The first thing you’ll want to do is run a search of the emails in your inbox, trash, and spam folders. This is where the trail of breadcrumbs begins for finding the accounts that are linked to your email address.
Some of the phrases you should experiment with searching are:
- “Account created”
- “Welcome to”
- “Verify your account”
- “Confirm your email”
- “Verify your email address”
- “Activate account”
This will quickly give you a list of possible sites that you likely have an account with. There are probably a lot of them, so you’ll need to stay organized.
Take these emails and either tag or move them into a folder where you can easily locate them all at once. Label it whatever you want (we suggest “to be annihilated”).
Once this is done you can either work through them directly or pull it all to a separate spreadsheet to keep track of things a little better. It’s entirely up to you and what you think will make the process easy.
This is where things start to get a little repetitive.
If you’re not using software to help you out you’ll have to visit each of these sites one by one and get your account removed. This gets old fast, so you might want to throw on a movie in the background to help you keep your sanity.
For some of these sites, the easiest option is to simply delete the account by accessing the settings.
Facebook is a perfect example of a site where this makes the most sense. They have too many accounts to quickly deal with an emailed removal request, and they give you the ability to deactivate your account right in their dashboard.
Once you’re done with all of these sites it’s time to move on to the ones that are better suited for an email request.
By this, we mean sites that might not offer a clear deactivation option within their dashboard, or recommend that you get in touch with them if you wish to delete your account.
You might think that these are going to take up most of your time but it’s actually not that bad.
You’re going to use some very specific language that will require them to take your request very seriously.
No, you’re not going to pitch a fit and demand to be removed. Instead, you’re simply going to reference GDPR.
GDPR has nothing to do with the process of finding all accounts linked to an email address. Its usefulness is strictly tied to the removal process.
Without spending too much time on the specifics, GDPR is a law that gives you the legal right to request the removal of your data from a website or service. There’s much more to it than that but for our purposes, this will be what we take advantage of.
Sending the emails
While it might be tempting to send one email out to all of the sites at once, you should avoid doing this.
The sites have to comply with your request, but a lot of them have policies against automated submissions. We’re not sure how this is allowed, but it’s a thing.
That means in order to do things right the first time you’ll want to send out individual emails to each. This won’t take that much longer because you can paste in the same message to each site, and you’ll be sure that your request makes it through.
There isn’t one specific template you should send out. Just make sure you mention the following points:
- You want to erase your personal data in accordance with Article 15 GDPR and that you meet the requirements of data removal requests set forth in Article 17(1) GDPR.
- That even if you consented to the processing of your personal data, you hereby withdraw consent and no longer want your data stored or processed by the site in question.
What to do next
You’re done for now, but there’s still a little work to do going forward. As we mentioned earlier there’s no perfect way of finding all accounts linked to your email address, so a few sites might have slipped through the cracks.
If you’re up to it you can do another pass through your past emails to look for anything you might have missed. Cleaning out your email is obviously not a fun task, but it has a good chance of uncovering something.
If you’re someone who sets up manual filters to keep your inbox tidy you should look at that list as well. You might be automatically deleting emails from sites that you joined a while back, and this list will help you identify them.
If you’re not interested in subjecting yourself to the torture of journeying through your inbox, there’s another option for you:
Wait for them to show their face.
This might seem too good to be true, but it’s one of the best ways to find accounts linked to your email address.
Websites you’ve joined will probably send you an email at some point. This could be to notify you about something or simply ask you to visit the site again.
No matter what the reason is, you should use this as an opportunity to get rid of the stragglers.
These emails might come to your inbox or spam, so check both periodically. After a while, you’ll probably be able to knock off a good chunk of the remaining sites your email address is registered to.
Here’s How To Automate The Process
Some of you might not be a fan of all that legwork. I know if I wanted to find all accounts linked to my email address I would be in the same boat.
That’s why we developed a tool of our own that automates the entire process. It will quickly scan your email to find what websites you might have joined, and then give you the option to remove whatever accounts you don’t want anymore.
If you want to find all the accounts linked to your email address for free you can still use our tool. We only charge if you want to use the automated delete feature, not the scan.
This tool should be publically available sometime in the next couple of weeks. We’ll update this post with links to the tool when it’s ready but in the meantime, you can sign up for a free account so we can notify you directly.
Get To It
Finding all accounts linked to your email isn’t as straightforward as it should be. In fact, it’s kind of a pain.
But with a little creativity and the methods above, you can figure out what sites your email address has been registered to. Having this information not only makes you more aware of the potential risk you face but puts you in the driver’s seat when it comes to protecting yourself.