Can I have faxes delivered to several e-mail accounts?

I’m looking for an inexpensive Internet fax service that can both send and receive. I would like to keep my existing fax number and have all incoming faxes delivered to 5-10 e-mail accounts. Does this type of service exist?

If you’re shifting to an Internet-based fax service, it’s understandable that you’d want to keep your existing fax number. By sticking with the number you’ve had for years, you can avoid inconveniencing your clients and contacts as well as save yourself the hassle of redesigning and/or reprinting your letterhead, business cards and similar materials.

However, continuing to use your existing fax number can be tricky, and in some cases, nearly impossible. Keeping the same number is relatively simple for incoming faxes, but when it comes to sending faxes, you’ll likely be stuck with the number the Internet fax service assigns you.

To make sure your new Internet-based fax account has the appearance (to recipients) of sending faxes from your existing number, ask before signing up if the service can “port” your existing number, or if the company will allow you to set up call-forwarding that will pass along—to your new Internet fax account—faxes sent to your longtime fax number. Call-forwarding is a fee-based service from your local phone company, but not all companies require you to actually set aside a physical phone line for this function, so be sure to ask so you don’t end up paying even more for the privilege.

If you want your incoming faxes to automatically go to more than one e-mail account, the best approach would probably be to have them sent initially to one e-mail, which you can configure to redistribute the incoming faxes to other e-mail account by using an e-mail alias (on Linux systems) or adjusting the control panel with your Internet service provider (ISP). Or, you can set up your e-mail account to forward all e-mails (including faxes) to the other e-mail addresses you designate. Many e-mail services, such as Gmail, will let you add a “filter” to forward only messages that meet certain criteria—such as a keyword found only in e-mails from the Internet-based fax company.

As for finding an inexpensive Internet fax service, try the price-comparison resource at

Do you have a question about faxing? Send me your fax question.