Microsoft drops linked accounts on

Urges users to switch to aliases

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Microsoft is dropping its support for linked accounts on and pushing people towards the use of aliases to manage several email addresses.

An Office blogpost by Eric Doeer, Group Program Manager, says the move is due to linked accounts being less secure than aliases.

He says experience shows that many users don't take sufficient care in managing their secondary accounts and that this makes them vulnerable to hackers. In contrast, aliases can be tied to a single account that makes it easier for the user to keep the security info up to date.

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Unlinking schedule

Microsoft plans to email users in the next few days with instructions on making the change, and is advising those with linked accounts to update the security on each. It's going to begin unlinking linked accounts in late July.

The move is the latest step in what has been an apparently smooth transition from Hotmail to for Microsoft's email service.