Email Dangers At Work

If you work in an office, you probably have email access through your job. Using email at work requires you to remember that it comes with certain risks. They can damage your career or even cost you your position. Stay out of trouble by avoiding these three email dangers:

1. Expecting privacy.

Anything you do at work is likely to be watched, monitored and reported. This includes your email. Deleting a message from your account does not erase the record of it from the system. In fact, everything you do on work computers can be monitored, because the servers save records of all activity long after you have removed it from your computer.

What does this mean to you?

Avoid sending forwards or jokes through company email.
Avoid using it for personal messages that you would rather others not read.
Don’t say you sent a particular email if you did not.

2. Responding when upset.

We all have good days and bad days. We often receive messages that upset or excite us. When this happens, do you want to respond right away? Watch out, this is one of the email dangers. Responding to a message when you are angry, upset or excited is an invitation to trouble. You are more likely to make poor word choices or to reveal information that you should not, whether personal or proprietary.

What does this mean to you?

Spend some time calming down before responding.
Make sure you are thinking clearly.
Review your response before sending.

3. Using “Reply to All.”

Reply to all is not appropriate for every business message. For instance, it is bad form to complain about the boss using company email, but it’s even worse to unintentionally send it to his or her inbox. Or to everyone in the building. The “Reply All” button is always dangerous.

What does this mean to you?

Know who you are sending the message to.
Review your email before it goes out.
Be aware of the other two dangers when dealing with company email.

The higher your position, the more prevalent these dangers tend to be. But even if you are the lowest person on the company roster, stay out of harm’s way by avoiding these pitfalls altogether.