General Etiquette > Techno-quette

Help phrasing an email

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My email address is 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.

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?

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.

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

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:


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

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.


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