Outlook Auto-Complete List

Information and Privacy Office

Security and Privacy Notice
Microsoft Outlook Auto-Complete List

Auto-Complete List

Auto-Complete List feature is a default setting in Microsoft Outlook 2007 and Microsoft Outlook 2010. When entering an email address in the To/Cc/Bcc field, Auto-Complete List generates a list of suggested email addresses that match the information typed. This list comprises past email recipients.

This feature can be convenient but it increases the chance that an email may be sent to the wrong recipient. This is of particular concern when sending sensitive and highly sensitive information, including personal information. For example, an email containing personal information can easily be sent to the wrong recipient because the sender inadvertently accepted an incorrect Auto-Compete List suggestion. We encourage all University personnel who send sensitive and highly sensitive information to disable this feature.

  • On the Outlook menu, click File and then click Options
  • Click the Mail tab and scroll down to Send messages
  • Unclick the Use Auto-Complete List to suggest names when typing in the To, Cc, and Bcc lines and click OK

Screenshot used with permission from Microsoft

Image of outlook menu

  • Clicking Empty Auto-Complete List can also be used to purge the contents of the list.

 To lessen the likelihood than an email containing sensitive or highly sensitive information may be sent to the wrong recipient, University personnel can also enable the Delay Delivery feature. This feature can be used for specific emails or all emails and provides the sender with an opportunity to review a sent email before it reaches its recipient.

To use Delay Delivery for a single email.

  • When composing an email, click Options then Delay Delivery
  • On the Properties pop-up, choose the email delivery date and time

Image of outlook menu

Screenshot used with permission from Microsoft

The email will remain in the Outbox until sent.

To use Delay Delivery for all emails.

  • On the Outlook menu, click File and then Manage Rules & Alerts
  • On the Email Rules tab, click New Rule
  • Under Start from a blank rule, click Apply rule on messages I send then click Next
  • On the Rules Wizard tab, select the applicable categories or just click Next for the rule to apply to all sent messages
  • In Step 1, click Defer delivery by a number of minutes
  • In Step 2, click on Defer delivery by a number of minutes, choose a number of minutes between 1 and 120 and click OK
  • Then click Finish, read the message and click OK

 Image of outlook menu

 Screenshot used with permission from Microsoft

Additional Tips for Emailing or Transporting Highly Sensitive Documents
  • Apply a password to the document. If sending to other departments or outside the University, communicate the password to the recipient(s) beforehand – not in the email or attachment.
  • University departments can generate a common password to encrypt Office and PDF documents that are shared within the department. This minimizes the risk of accidental disclosure to persons outside the department.

 For more information contact

Dan Elves                                               Mark Rogowski
Information and Privacy Officer                 Senior Information Security Administrator
204-988-7538                                        204-786-9034