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Canonicalizing and Hashing Emails for Customer Match

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

This is regarding Google's new "Customer Match" feature, full details here: https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/6276125?hl=en

 

The article mentions that you can upload hashed emails for increased privacy protection, as stated in the article, this effectively converts the email address:

 

example@gmail.com

to the code:

 

264e53d93759bde067fd01ef2698f98d1253c730d12f021116f02eebcfa9ace6

Gmail, and many other large email providers, will ignore dots inserted in email addresses (so e.x.a.m.p.l.e@gmail.com is the same as example@gmail.com) AND they will ignore anything inserted after a PLUS sign in email addresses (so example+ignoreme@gmail.com is the same as example@gmail.com)

 

MY QUESTION:

When you hash example+ignoreme@gmail.com or e.x.a.m.p.l.e@gmail.com you get different codes. Should we make it a policy to "canonicalize" email addresses by removing dots and everything after a plus sign before hashing?

 

Thanks

 

Re: Canonicalizing and Hashing Emails for Customer Match

Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
# 2
Participant ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi Andy, how are things?

 

I'm not totally familiar with the Customer Match yet, but I want to leave my thinking on this.

 

I don't think that it should be a policy to "canonicalize" e-mail address. Usually the feature that ignores dots and plus signal information are for database registration only, so they don't get hundreds of spam addresses, but as we are aware, sending an e-mail to "exam.ple@gmail.com" is different from sendind an e-mail to "e.xample@gmail.com".

 

So I guess it's correct to assume different hashs for different e-mail aliases.

 

Just my thoughts on this.

 

Hope it helps.

 

Cheers,


Leandro Martinez | Basta1Click

Re: Canonicalizing and Hashing Emails for Customer Match

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Thanks for the reply.

 

I agree with you when it comes to sending emails. If a customer registers for our site using e.xample+extra@gmail.com, we will save that as the email address and only send emails to that address.

 

But with Customer Match, you are uploading a list of email addresses (or in my case hashed email addresses) in order to identify users in the Google system, not email them. It seems to me that the best way to identify users is to strip off the plus sign and anything that follows it.

 

Not sure about the dots though.

 

 

 

Re: Canonicalizing and Hashing Emails for Customer Match

Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
Oh I get what you mean.

Yes, I agree that in terms of identifying the user e-mail address, it would be easier to remove the plus signal and everything after that. You just have to check, because usually user that use the plus signal tends to be a more have user at e-mail subscribing list, so having ones e-mail without the plus signal and it's information may cause that impression of "I didn't sign up for this list".

Personally, I wouldn't mess with the dots in any way Smiley Happy

Leandro Martinez | Basta1Click