Thursday, December 6, 2007

How to Avoid Sending Emails to the WRONG person

This happened to me yesterday. I used Outlook's auto-complete feature to select an email address while addressing my email and selected the wrong person. I ended up sending the email to completely the wrong person.

My Outlook is configured to send out emails automatically and I wasn't able to stop it ... although I realised my mistake within seconds of clicking Send.

Luckily for me, the content of the email wasn't confidential so there was no real damage done. But things could have been worse ...

Here are two ways to avoid this problem.

Option 1: Disable the Send Immediately function (not my preferred option).

You can setup Outlook to only send out emails according to your preset schedule or when you click Send&Receive.

To turn off automatic sends:

Click Tools-Options.
Click Mail Setup.
Remove the tick next to "Send immediately when connected"

Option 2: Delay all outgoing emails in your Outbox for (say) 30 seconds - this is what I have now implemented

It is possible to do this manually but it has to be done for every email you write … I am way to lazy for a manual solution ... it's not going to happen.

Instead I use the Delay Guard feature in SendGuard 4 Outlook to delay all my outgoing emails by 30 seconds. The settings screen is shown below.

I have set it up so that it asks me if I want the email delayed whenever I click Send (if you find the message intrusive, just remove one tick on the settings screen for all emails to be automatically delayed without the message)

Why 30 seconds? I find that I realise within 30 seconds of clicking Send if there's something wrong with the email I just sent. After 30 seconds I've moved on to something else and the email would have been sent out anway.

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