How to recall an email in Outlook

WE'VE all been there – that stomach-churning moment you hit send on an email and you instantly know you’ve made a mistake.

Luckily for you trigger-happy typers, Microsoft allows users to recall an email sent on Outlook in a matter of minutes.

What is a message recall?

An email recall can stop the recipient from seeing the message that you sent in error.

If you sent the email between Outlook accounts or to another Microsoft account then you’re in luck.

Once a message is recalled the recipient will no longer be able to access the content or any files that were attached.

However, for you to take advantage of this handy electronic eraser, the recipient must also be an Outlook user or be part of the same organisation.

This means a colleague – or worse, the boss – who also works on a desktop computer with the same Outlook software as you.

How do I recall an email in Outlook?

There are seven simple steps to turn back the clock and snatch back that pesky rogue email:

1. Log onto your desktop app and click on the Sent Items folder, find the email you want to recall, and double-click on it.

2. Next, click the message tab at the top of the screen on the toolbar, and click on the 'Move' section.

3. Then click the 'More Move Actions' button, which looks like a letter and an envelope.

4. A drop-down list will appear showing recall this message – click that option.

5. A window then appears with two options – delete unread copies of this message, or delete unread copies and replace with a new message. Select whichever option you want.

6. If you did choose to send a replacement message, a second window will appear where you can reverse the message.

7. Finally, press 'Send' on your revised message. Outlook will also send you a notification that tells you if the recall has been successful or has failed.

It is important to know that the recipient may still need to open the recalled message first to have the original one disappear.

A handy tip to achieve this outcome is simply change the message's title to include “URGENT” so that email is opened first.

But bear in mind that even after you have recalled an email, the recipient may still be notified when a message is deleted from their inbox and they can no longer view it.

What do I need to access message recall?

To access the message recall option, you will have to be using a computer within your organisation's hub.

This means that Outlook will be a desktop program on either a laptop or computer that allows the user to access emails without logging into the web.

So, if you are looking to delete that embarrassing, incorrect or incomplete email make sure you access the email on your company computer.

And then follow the simple steps listed above to delete or resend a replacement message.

Now, blow out your cheeks, mop your brow and crack on with your day job.

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