Knowledge Base

Defining the Email Hash

What's an email hash? 

The email hash is a 32-character code, unique to each email address. This code can be matched, but not reversed, so it’s completely private and anonymous. 

Using the hashed email address lets LiveIntent target real people, not pixels — but we do not receive or store these email addresses. Any email passed by our clients to the LiveIntent Platform is converted to a hash prior to hitting our servers, and is discarded immediately after hashing.

How does email hashing work? 

Hashing takes a piece of data, like an email address, and converts it to a 32-character hexadecimal string.  Every time this email address is run through the hashing algorithm, the same result  is delivered. 

What that means is that your email address, a unique value, is converted to a unique hash string through this process. Originally used as a security feature, it’s now  ended up as a marketing tool that works across every marketing channel. 

For example: hashed would be 4f64c9f81bb0d4ee- 969aaf7b4a5a6f40.

Benefits of email hashing

  • Communicate with clients across all screens and devices: Unlike the cookie, which represents an anonymous user, the email address represents a known customer. It’s unique to that individual, and remains persistent across all devices, apps and browsers
  • Respect client privacy, without sacrificing accuracy: By hashing, your clients’ email addresses are transformed into matching segments that can’t be readily used for mailing,respecting the rights of your partners and customers

Additional Resources

For more on the value of the email hash, and why it’s more effective than cookies, check out the below: 

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