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Email Fail, Part 32

, , , , , | Working | July 7, 2021

Out of the blue, I receive the following email from “service.call.planning” at a well-known home appliance manufacturer’s email address.

Manufacturer Email: “Good afternoon. I have tried to contact you today regarding a visit for your hob, but unfortunately, I was not able to leave a message or speak to you directly. Due to the fact our technician requires parts for the repair, I have rescheduled the appointment for [date]. If for any reason this date is not suitable, please do not hesitate to contact us using the number below.”

It doesn’t look like the usual spam or a scammer. They are clearly trying to contact someone and repair their hob. This customer’s email address is probably similar to mine, as my email address contains a common name.  

I am not the customer they are looking for, though. I am fairly certain of this, not just because I do not need a hob repair, but also because the phone number and web address provided are in the UK; I am in Sydney, Australia.

I do a quick search, and the website and phone number seem legit. I decide to be helpful. However, I have noticed I am usually quite verbose, so I decide to stick just to the relevant facts and requested actions in my reply.

My Email: “Good morning. I believe you have the wrong email address. Would you kindly check your records, please? Kind regards.”

I receive the following response.

Manufacturer Email: “Good morning. Thank you for your following email. I can confirm we have the following address details.”

In their email to me was a screenshot of the full database details of their UK customer, including name, residential address, phone number, and mobile phone number! And, of course, MY email address.

I sent as stern a response as I could manage, letting them know that I had not asked for this information and was upset that they’d sent it to me. I pointed out that they had done the equivalent of receiving a not-at-this-address response, addressing a new letter to the same address, and enclosing a customer’s personal information, except that I did not have the option of returning it unopened. This time, I explicitly requested that they delete my email address from their records. They sent a suitably apologetic response and agreed to do so, and said they’d train the agent responsible for this exchange.

Looking back, I can kind of see how “You have the wrong email address” could have been interpreted as, “I am your customer and you have my email address wrong,” if I hadn’t been EMAILING them from that very address!

Related:
Email Fail, Part 31
Email Fail, Part 30
Email Fail, Part 29
Email Fail, Part 28
Email Fail, Part 27

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