PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — POP QUIZ! How many businesses, creditors, online accounts, contacts, friends and ships at sea have your email address?

These days we are identified by our email address more often than our social security number. So, you can imagine the concern of Verizon.net customers when an email arrives saying things like, “You must take action,” and “Your email will be blocked!”

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A couple of years ago, Verizon bought AOL and they’ve been operating email on separate servers. The company says it’s time to move everyone to the AOL server.

The national spokesman for Verizon, Ray McConville, says, “We think we’re giving our customers a better email experience. The AOL server has better spam filters then Verizon.net and a lot more features.”

The email from Verizon about the change certainly got Harry Kelso’s attention.

“We use the emails a lot,” he said.

So he printed out the letter and headed to the McKnight Road Verizon store to find out what he should do because he certainly didn’t like what the letter said.

“You’re not going to get emails anymore if you don’t change to what it tells you to do,” he said.

The FIOS employees pointed out to Harry the link from the email and how to make the conversion over to AOL. McConville says they’ve made it a simple process.

“It has a link that has very simple-to-follow instructions,” he said.

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McConville says when you follow the steps, “all their existing emails, all their contacts, all their calendars and their existing addresses, it all automatically imports over to the AOL platform. School, my company, it is what it is. Everybody has my email.”

While all the email will be on the AOL server, Verizon’s McConville says, “Really the most important thing that I can’t stress enough is that no one is losing their Verizon.net email address. The only thing that is changing for customers is you’re accessing it at a different place [AOL.com].”

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Tina Pickl, from Millvale, says it’s a good thing she’ll be able to hang onto Verizon.net because “everybody and their brother” has her email address.

But to keep your Verizon.net email address, you must respond to the email Verizon is sending every email customer. If you don’t, McConville says, “After 30 days you will be locked out and have to unlock it to gain access. After 180 days of no activity, the inbox will be deleted all together.”

There is one other option if you choose not to continue with Verizon.net and AOL.

Option 2 allows for customers who want to set up their own email using a server like Outlook or Gmail and then manually moving your contents to the new server. That transition is handled automatically if you’re moving to AOL. Only customers who slide over to AOL will be able to continue using the Verizon.net email address.

Verizon has been notifying groups of customers of this change and setting deadlines for a couple of months. Within the next two months, everyone should have been offered the chance to move their files.

If you do nothing, your Verizon.net account will cease to exist and the contents gone for good.

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For more information, visit Verizon’s website at this link.