This is a short post to streamline opening accounts on sina.com, which is a free Chinese webmail account provider. Why would you want an account on Sina? Well, I use it for counter-spam/phishing/counter-phishing operations, or simply as a recurring disposable email account when services like 10 minute mail or Mailinator are blocked, or should I need something less public. Obviously, no sensitive information should be used with any email account used on this service.
Opening an Account
Browse to Sina.com to access the main login page, where you can also register. On the login page, you are greeted with a typical login page. To register account, click on the second button, i.e. ‘注册’, as shown in figure 1.
The registration page should appear. Little information is needed to register an account and no mobile phone number verification is required. Actually, all you need is a password and a username! If you ever need more details, you can generate a complete persona using the FakeIdentityGenerator. For this account, I generated a persona called ‘Mulan Fu’ by selecting Chinese names. Let’s see if Disney sues for using the name ‘Mulan’. Just fill the form with your email prefix, a password, the captcha and click on the blue button.
You may be brought directly to your new inbox. Otherwise, just login and make sure the ‘SSL’ option is selected. Enter your email address and password an click on the blue button (figure 3).
You can finally reach your inbox, which is organized like any other webmail services (figure 4). The ‘New Email’ button is the one on the top left corner, which reads ‘写信’. To access your inbox, simply click on the first item in the folder list on the left (‘收件夹’). Finally, to consult sent email, use the forth item from the top in the folder list (‘已发送’).
Composing a New Email
To write a new email, click the button detailed in the previous paragraph (see figure 4). If you compose a new email for the first time, you will be prompt to create a new signature (figure 5). Enter any information you want and save the information. You should be familiar with the composing interface (figure 6). You can use attachment up to 50M.
Click on the first button above the email, the one with the paper plane (‘发送’), to send the email.
Obviously, there are many other features that can be used. Many of them, if not most, are similar to any other webmail services on the Internet. One of the advantage of using this particular service is that, unlike Google or Outlook, it asks for very little information and doesn’t require mobile phone verification. Also, unlike some temporary email services, it’s ‘private’, at least, less public and permanent. Finally, since Sina.com is still a legit service, but not well known in the Western world, it can be used for most online services without too much suspicion. This make it ideal for social engineering operations. There are other similar services around the world, with various level of intrusiveness when it comes to registration.