Yahoo will begin to offer a new ‘Not My Email’ button this week that will give users the ability to ‘return’ messages that were not meant for them. This is part of Yahoo’s ongoing efforts to reduce any possible harm that may arise from its recent user name recycle program.
The button will be accessible from the Yahoo Mail inbox and will allow users to reject mail that isn’t theirs.
The recycle program allowed people to claim names that were deemed dormant by Yahoo and it received high criticism from the public because of the potential to be dangerous to the privacy of the previous owners of the names.
It was after Yahoo realized this wasn’t going to work well that they came up with a series of steps to prevent issues which includes 30 days of messages to the user to notify them that their account was going to be given away, bouncing emails back to senders to notify them that the account was deactivated and no longer valid, and a 12-month minimum on dormancy.
All these steps do not seem to work out well with the users as private information are being rolled out to unintended users. InformationWeek gathered diverse views of users on these security surprises.
TechCrunch got together with Yahoo Platforms Senior Director, Dylan Casey about the issues some users are seeing and he acknowledged that there have been some cases. He pointed out that Yahoo has been monitoring its systems for claims about mistaken deliveries and were able to quickly identify what was going on with some of these accounts.
The new ‘Not My Email’ button will allow users to train their inboxes, rejecting email even before they’ve read it if they recognize it’s not meant for them from the subject line. Casey says that they’re also doing individual outreach to any users or senders that they can. The new button will roll out before the end of the week and should help users with a direct ‘return to sender, address unknown’ option, but the ‘account fatigue’ and reset questions are just beginning to rear their heads.
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