As you know, I work as a Microsoft Certified Trainer providing training and coaching on Microsoft products to companies in the United Kingdom. Some of my work comes via an agency, and one particular agency that I have worked with for many years always e-mails the job requirement to me and other trainers registered with them via a Bcc in Outlook.
This protects everybody’s identity, but the problem arises when one of the recipients decides to use the Reply to All email function in Outlook. As soon as this is invoked all the original recipients’ e-mail addresses are revealed which rather defeats the object.
Reply to All – turning it off
I have often thought that this was a potential risk, and I mentioned it to the agent the other day during our conversation. He was unaware that the Reply to All function could be turned off in Outlook 2010 and 2013 and asked me how he could achieve it.
I sent him detailed instructions on how to turn off Reply to All and decided to use them as the basis of this post. Here is the step-by-step sequence of instructions you need to follow, and don’t worry — it might look complicated, but in actual fact it is really very easy.
In order for this to work we must use a form, and in order to create a form we need to turn on the Developer tab. To do this, go to the File tab then down to Options and click Customise Ribbon. Scroll down until you find Developer and tick the box to turn the developer ribbon on.
Open a new blank e-mail message and put in the recipient’s details. If you are using the Bcc method, add your own email address in the To box and your recipient’s email addresses in the Bcc box (read the post on using the Reply to All BCC method here).
Now go back to the Developer tab and choose “Design This Form“
The form will now be shown at the top of the e-mail window. Click on the Actions tab and then double-click the entry for Reply to All:
The dialogue box will open. At the top of the box is a small check box that says Enabled -untick this box to turn the feature off:
Click OK and in the Enabled column the word Yes will have changed to No:
Click Run This Form on the Developer tab to clear the screen and return to the email:
That’s it! Now you can send your e-mail safe in the knowledge that the recipients who are blind copied into the message will not be able to Reply to All as the option is greyed out:
If you try to use the function from the Inbox you are presented with this error message: