Almost all of us can recall moments when we reluctantly decided to not send an email to someone simply because it would contain confidential documents which we do not want anyone to see except for the recipient. Those days are over. With a new feature introduced by Google’s Gmail and Microsoft’s Outlook, you can practically make a certain email unforwardable. In other words, you could now prevent your emails from being forwarded by their recipients.

But only denying the receiver from forwarding your emails may not necessarily address all your concerns. What if, for instance, the recipient downloads the confidential attachment and send it to others in a new email? Fortunately, the feature introduced by Gmail restricts the recipient not only from forwarding the email but also from downloading the attachments, copying the contents or printing them. You can set up to 5 years as expiration time, after which the entire contents of your email will simply vanish.

While being able to prevent someone from forwarding your emails from a desktop is possible both on Gmail and Outlook, disabling email forwarding using a mobile device is only available on the official Gmail app (both Android and iPhone/iPad). The Outlook mobile app does not offer this feature.

How to disable Gmail’s email forwarding using a smartphone

Let us find out how we can make a Gmail email unforwardable using a smartphone.

Gmail’s ‘Confidential mode’: How to make an email unforwardable on a smartphone
Gmail’s ‘Confidential mode’: How to make an email unforwardable on a smartphone
  • Open the Gmail mail_outline app on your smartphone. And, click on the compose button.
  • At the right-top corner, tap on the vertical more button more_vert
  • And then click on Confidential mode.
  • Now Set expiry (from 1 day to 5 years) after which the content will disappear.
  • And finally, tap on doneSave.
  • That’s it. You can now write the subject and compose the body of the email, probably add attachment attachment and finally when you are done, send send it to the recipient.

The recipient will find no done Forward button in this email. The copy option will not work either. Additionally, if the recipient tries to print print the page, they will only see a page, which reads, “This email cannot be printed.” If you uploaded attachment(s) attachment in the email, the recipient could only view the file but there will be no “Download” save_alt button.