Author Topic: Help phrasing an email  (Read 3056 times)

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sweetonsno

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Help phrasing an email
« on: June 17, 2014, 02:24:57 AM »
My email address is firstnamelastname@popularclient.com. Neither of my names is particularly common (or rare), but one of them is a real word that younger women sometimes like to put in their email addresses. Let's say for the sake of discussion that it's Jane Angel.

I have been getting emails intended for the other Jane. Some of them are clearly spam or email lists, but some of them are personal. For ones that are just mailing lists, I've been unsubscribing. For ones that are personal, I'll usually respond with a "You've got the wrong Jane Angel, please update your records."

I suspect that she's got my email address on autofill somewhere, because the number of emails that I'm receiving has been increasing quite a bit. This is more than just an annoyance to me; it's a security risk to her.

Do you have any thoughts on how to phrase this message? Do I mention the security issues (I've been sent or given access to personal information on more than one occasion), or just let her know that I've been getting her email?

Oh, the reason I know her other email address is that she set mine as a recovery email over the weekend. That message is what made me decide that I should probably inform her of the mistake.

Cannonade

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2014, 09:37:27 AM »
This baffles me...If she set your e-mail as a recovery e-mail, does she think that she has access your e-mail account?

PastryGoddess

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2014, 09:56:05 AM »
Set up a canned response in Gmail.

You'll need to go to settings > labs to turn it on.  Then follow the instructions in this link. http://webapps.stackexchange.com/questions/49137/auto-responders-to-only-certain-email-addresses-in-gmail

I had to do this when I gave someone the cut direct.  I also set up the filter to have the emails go directly into the trash after the canned response was sent

Celany

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2014, 10:06:26 AM »
Do *you* know the other Jane Angel's actual email address by now? Can you contact her directly?

If not, I would set up the canned message & put something like:

Hello,

This email address does not belong to the Jane Angel you are trying to reach. Please check your records and contact the correct Jane Angel. Also, you may want to tell her that she is using the incorrect email address, and it is allowing me access to her personal information. Please ask her to remove this email address from her accounts, so that her information stays private.

Thank you!

- Not THAT Jane Angel
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MrTango

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2014, 11:37:35 AM »
To be honest, I wouldn't bother trying to say anything to anyone in this situation.

I'd just flag any emails intended for her as Spam and let my spam filters deal with them.

If you really want to send a reply email, I'd keep it very short and direct: "This email account does not belong to [other person's name].  Please check your records and try again."

I'd give each sender one response, after which I'd mark the email as spam so that any further attempts to use my email address to reach the other person would be routed to my spam folder and deleted.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2014, 11:39:58 AM by MrTango »

DaDancingPsych

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2014, 11:38:17 AM »
If you are contacting her directly (as in, you managed to receive her *real* email address), then yes, I would mention the security risk. I would mention all the types of emails that you have been receiving and mention the messages that are providing you with those personal details. I would do this for yourself, because hopefully that will wake her up to how serious this is and that she needs to get on fixing this yesterday (hopefully the emails will stop sooner). I would also do this so that she knows all the places that she has made the error.

Any further action would depend on her response to that email.

sweetonsno

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2014, 02:58:31 PM »
I don't know if she thinks she has access to my email account. I doubt it. I suspect that she accidentally entered my email address once and now it is autofilling in. (Her other email address is probably JaneDarling1@popularemailclient.com.)

Thus far, I have received an e-ticket/boarding pass, a digital receipt with shipping and billing information, several emails about enrolling in a college (when I clicked on the link to Unsubscribe, I got taken to Jane's profile page, which included her home address and phone number), messages regarding rental properties, and a handful of savings club emails.

To clarify, I'm not overly concerned about responding to the senders. I'm wondering about how to tell Jane that she has been providing people with my email address instead of her own. (And yes, I have her real email address. I got it when she tried to link her new account with mine.)

PastryGoddess

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2014, 03:31:28 PM »
Then maybe do a forward with those emails and in the subject put: WRONG EMAIL ADDRESS.

Then do a canned message and ask them to remove your email address from their system.  When she doesn't get the emails she's supposed to, she can call them up and figure it out. 

Lynn2000

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2014, 04:02:05 PM »
I like the idea of forwarding the real Jane one of the emails you received, preferably something important and/or personal, with the additional message, "I have been receiving emails meant for you for some time now. Please check that you are entering your address correctly." Or something like that. I think that would hit home for her the kind of thing you've been receiving, that she doesn't want out there.

You might want to put something in the subject that will catch her eye. I have my email set up to shunt all emails that are not from my safe list straight into Junk, and every couple of days I skim through that for the occasional real thing I need to rescue. So if this was you and me, your email would go to my junk mail folder, and I would probably think it was actual spam unless the subject intrigued me enough to open it.

If she seemed nice in her response, I might forward other emails to her--old ones that I'd kept, or the occasional new one to help her get things straightened out. That would be nice, above and beyond polite. Otherwise I would just keep deleting, maybe occasionally reply back to someone that they've got the wrong person.
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sweetonsno

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Re: Help phrasing an email UPDATE
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2014, 12:41:05 AM »
So, the update is that I received another email intended for the other Jane Darling. This one was about real estate. I forwarded it to the OJD and asked her to check her record and replied to the sender telling them that they had the wrong email and asked them to check their records.

I did unsubscribe from all real estate lists but have received no responses. Have a couple more drifting in now and then for other things but will probably just tell them they have the wrong person and/or give them the new contact that I have. The probably is that if there are two Jane Darlings out there whose emails are going to me, I may wind up inundating one with the other's  mail.

Thoughts?

Perfect Circle

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2014, 05:20:30 AM »
I think as you have made her aware she has been using the wrong email address I would do nothing else, delete everything that comes to her and leave it at that. If you continue to help her out she doesn't have that much motivation to correct the problem, but if she no longer gets any of these emails, she might act an awful lot quicker.
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kckgirl

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #11 on: June 29, 2014, 08:14:57 AM »
I have had something similar happen twice.

The first series was with a person who shares my first and last names. I got carpool changes, swimming play dates, PTA notices, and stuff like that. I usually responded that I was the wrong person and they should check their records. I suspect she had first.last@provider.com, while mine is firstlast@provider.com. The last email I received was from her mother, with whom she had apparently cut contact. It had been a long time since I had received email for her, and I wouldn't have read it at all, but I was so confused trying to figure out who was writing to me and what she was talking about. When she signed it "Mom" I finally realized she was emailing the other person with my name. I did let her know that her email went to the wrong person.

The second series was from Cornell University. Their facilities department was responding to requests from a student about various problems in her dorm room over a two or three year span. I told them each time that they had reached the wrong person. The last I received was from an academic office about her major/minor, asking her to get in touch with them. I did write back, told them I had never been a student or staff member at Cornell, that either the university or the student had entered the wrong email address into their system, and that all future emails would go to the trash without comment. They finally stopped coming. Either they got it right, or she graduated/moved on.
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Ceallach

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2014, 08:50:01 AM »
Surely with the type of emails you are receiving she would have noticed that she isn't getting them, double-checked the email address she provided, and discovered the mistake?  Or perhaps I'm just assuming what a sensible person would do if they didn't receive an important email such as a flight confirmation or receipt!   

I wouldn't do anything further, the onus is on her from here.   You have brought it to attention and if she can't take responsibility for ensuring she receives her important emails, then that's on her.
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JenJay

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2014, 09:49:44 AM »
Surely with the type of emails you are receiving she would have noticed that she isn't getting them, double-checked the email address she provided, and discovered the mistake?  Or perhaps I'm just assuming what a sensible person would do if they didn't receive an important email such as a flight confirmation or receipt!   

I wouldn't do anything further, the onus is on her from here.   You have brought it to attention and if she can't take responsibility for ensuring she receives her important emails, then that's on her.

I agree! A person who can't be bothered to fix this over airline confirmations isn't going to fix it over website subscriptions. Sorry you're having to deal with this, sweetonsno. How frustrating! I'd delete them because I think, if you forward everything to her, she won't be very motivated to fix it. Once she's had to make a few phone calls to clear things up she'll get on it.

Coley

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Re: Help phrasing an email
« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2014, 11:10:33 AM »
A few months ago, I was getting e-mail for someone with the same name who lives in Houston. I've never lived in Houston. There were notices about unpaid rent, warnings about other unpaid bills, and then I got a weird one saying that I'd signed up for some online gourmet coffee service. I don't drink coffee, so I'd never sign up for such a service.

I replied to all the senders to tell them they had the wrong person/e-mail address. Then I deleted the e-mails. I figure it's between the recipient and sender to work it out.

When I contacted the online coffee service and told them they'd contacted the wrong person, they replied as if they had no idea what I was talking about. I just let it drop and deleted the e-mail. If the woman wants her coffee, she can deal with them!