"No reply" email address

I’m a pediatrician and I want to share symptom questionnaires and literature with families.

I always get consent to send anything electronically and encourage them to get an encrypted email address (e.g., ProtonMail), cautioning them about the insecurity of consumer email for potentially sensitive information. The reality is that most people just say send whatever anyway.

I can’t use my institutional (or any) email because I don’t want to be contacted directly via email (impractical and medicolegally fraught) regarding future issues (I want them to use my administrative assistant’s phone to remain arm’s length).

It would be great to develop a website with everything there, but then they have to go looking rather than receiving personalized documents.

I have been using secure online questionnaires (i.e., https://childmentalhealth.ca), but that does not permit me to send literature (e.g., feeding strategies in autism spectrum disorder) and requires more tech-savviness to navigate than just getting an email.

I have Keyboard Maestro macros for sharing documents using my Paperpile library, but this still shows the “reply to” email address (the one associated with my PaperPile account).

The folks at PaperPile say they’re working on an option to hide this during a revamp of their sharing code.

ProtonMail tells me that “no reply” email addresses aren’t offered because they can be used for spamming, which I understand.

Is there a way that I can use a “no reply” email address? Any other thoughts regarding these challenges?

Thanks a lot!


I always assumed that “no reply” email addresses were simply regular email addresses for which the inbox is never checked, and in many cases, for which received email is immediately deleted.

If that’s right, what you really need is an email account (no-reply@yourdomain.com) with something like Sanebox, but where everything is sent to the black hole, never to be seen.

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Thanks @tf2! I hadn’t thought that it could be so simple! I think in my case I’d want a bounceback message for clarity (medicolegal).

The folks at ProtonMail said:

  1. You can have an email where you can set an automated message saying that this inbox would not reply back to you, etc.
  2. There is a feature where you can password protect the message, the recipients have the password (typically our customers in med use the patient number or patient last name, etc as the password). The patient enters the password and opens the message in ProtonMail servers without signing up for ProtonMail themselves. Thus protecting the message from “leaking” into the servers of their email providers.

Thanks again!


Great to know, and glad you found a good solution!

Working like a charm. I can send messages including attachments to non-secure parent/patient email addresses safely. All HIPAA compliant. I can include a password. I can set the message to self-destruct a la Inspector Gadget. I can use my custom domains (no-reply@…) instead of @protonmail.com. The recipient clicks the link to go to ProtonMail’s secure servers to access the message, rather than anything actually going through their consumer email.

I put this in the signature of every message to make the arrangement clear:

This address is used for secure, one-way communication only. Messages sent to this address WILL NOT reach Dr. (hidden). Please contact his office by phone at (hidden).

Sent with ProtonMail Secure Email.

Thanks again!