(redirected from Emails)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal.


(Electronic-MAIL) The transmission of text messages from sender to recipient. Email messages can also be formatted with graphics like a brochure or Web page, an enhancement that many users like, but that creates more spam and a security risk (see HTML email).

Users can send a mail message to a single recipient or to multiple users. In addition, JPEG photos as well as any other type of computer file may be attached to the message (see email attachment). Mail is sent to a simulated mailbox in the organization's mail server until it is downloaded to the "in" mailbox in the user's computer.

The Messaging System and the Client
An email system requires a messaging system, which is primarily a store and forward capability based on the Internet's Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP). A mail program (email client), such as Windows Mail, Mac Mail, Outlook and Eudora, provides the user interface for mailboxes and send and receive functions. Popular email services such as Gmail and Yahoo Mail are Web based, in which case the Web browser is used as the mail program (see email interfaces).

The Internet Changed It All
The Internet revolutionized email by turning countless incompatible islands into one global system. Initially serving its own users, in the mid-1990s, the Internet began to act as a mail gateway between the major online services such as CompuServe and America Online (AOL). It then became "the" messaging system for the planet. In the U.S., Internet mail is measured in the trillions of messages each year. See email vs. fax, messaging system, instant messaging, read receipt and self-destructing email.

Could They Have Imagined Spam?
When they sent this first message in 1971, could they have imagined the trillions of email messages that would follow in years to come? (Image courtesy of Dan Murphy,

The First Email on the Internet

In 1971, the first email message was typed into the Teletype terminal connected to the Digital Equipment PDP-10 toward the back of the room in the following picture. The message was transmitted via ARPAnet, the progenitor of the Internet, to the PDP-10 in front. Dan Murphy, a Digital engineer, took this photo in the Bolt, Beranek and Newman datacenter. See ARPAnet.

Could They Have Imagined Spam?
When they sent this first message in 1971, could they have imagined the trillions of email messages that would follow in years to come? (Image courtesy of Dan Murphy,
References in periodicals archive ?
The current practice for protecting email's utility as an efficient form of communication is to ostracize abusive sources when much of their email is sent to recipients that never expressed a desire for its receipt.
Regarding unsolicited emails, a patient-physician relationship with all its legal and liability implications is established if a physician replies to an unsolicited email.
The challenge with political email is that it cannot be categorically described as "spam" since many of the recipients have opted in to receive such emails based on any number of legitimate factors, i.
But not only do personal emails strain storage resources, ignoring emails with sexual or hate-filled content is an invitation to serious lawsuits.
The sharing of sensitive information through email has become a necessity in today's healthcare industry, however some organizations do not recognize the need and importance of securing those emails until it's too late," said Willy Leichter, Director, Product Marketing - Email Security at Tumbleweed.
But today's MIS and records management professionals are facing a new challenge: electronic communications, specifically email systems, now account for the majority of the business-critical records being created, captured, and stored in the corporate environment.
Without a formal filing and retention policy, past emails become a maze of unrelated communications that make responding to legal discovery and FOIA requests time consuming and costly.
Except among teens and young adults and inside certain fast-paced work environments, email is staying ahead of instant messaging in terms of usage.
Phishing attacks have moved beyond mass emails that spoof the email address of a bank or other online commerce site asking the recipient to verify passwords, account numbers or other personal financial information.
a leading provider of innovative email defense solutions that ensure email protection and security for businesses, service providers, government organizations, resellers and their customers, has received the highest-possible rating of five stars in the vendor-tuned portion of the latest (Summer 2005) VeriTest Anti-Spam Benchmark Service Report.
The consumer can then preview the message(s) and decide which emails they would like to open and/or delete; thereby eliminating payment for unwanted emails.