Updater, the premier online service for managing offline mail, launched its public beta site today at www.updater.com. Updater gives its users control over who can access and use their postal address, stops unwanted paper mail and simplifies the change of address process for the 40 million Americans who move each year.
Updater offers two services: Address Change and Address Privacy. With Address Change, Updater files an official Change of Address Form, on behalf of its users, with the United States Postal Service and directly updates the records of every business, educational institution and other organization that its users select. With Address Privacy, Updater acts as an authorized agent to remove users’ postal addresses from direct marketing lists and enables a customized “spam filter” for unwanted paper mail. Through these services, Updater empowers its users to save time, stop unwanted mail, reduce identity theft and help the environment.
“Notifying businesses and affiliations of a change of address is a major hassle, and postal addresses are increasingly hijacked by marketing firms, which use them as an unsolicited advertising platform,” noted David Greenberg, founder of Updater. “The consumer needs a trustworthy and reliable way to streamline the change of address process and decide for themselves which mail they want to receive.”
Updater expects the volume of advertising mail to grow considerably in the coming years, resulting in even more unwanted paper in mailboxes across America. In 2011, over 90 billion pieces of advertising mail will be sent through the postal system, accounting for nearly 25 percent of the world’s paper mail. Approximately half of this mail goes unopened into landfills. In addition to being a nuisance and causing environmental harm, advertising mail, pre-approved credit card offers and other unwanted mail have accounted for thousands of identity thefts.
Businesses, educational institutions and organizations in the Updater Network gain access to a near real-time feed of user-authorized address updates. This enables them to keep their contact information databases more accurate than has previously been possible.
“Updater is an advocate for consumers and a friend to businesses,” said Grant D. Schaffer, Executive Director of investment firm Schaffer Group, and a member of Updater’s Board of Directors. “Updater will help businesses maintain contact with their customers, all the while protecting consumers from unsolicited mail.”