Turn external recipients warnings on or off in Gmail

As an administrator, you can turn on alerts for messages that include external recipients. Gmail shows these alerts when your users get a message from an external email address, and when they reply to a message or conversation with an external address.

These alerts help people avoid unintentional replies to recipients outside your organization. They also remind people to treat external messages with caution.

When this setting is on, Gmail shows a warning when:

  • A message thread includes email addresses outside your organization.
  • You reply to an email address that's outside your organization and not in your Contacts.

Some notes about using external recipients warnings:

  • Gmail doesn't show external recipients warnings for secondary domain and and domain alias email addresses.
  • When you compose a new message to an external recipient, Gmail adds an image or colored border to the external email address. The Warn about external recipients setting doesn't control this behavior, which is always on.

Turn external recipients warnings on or off

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Appsand thenGoogle Workspaceand thenGmailand thenEnd User Access.

    Tip: To see End User Access, scroll to the bottom of the Gmail page.

  3. Select your top-level organization.
  4. Scroll to the Warn about external recipients setting. 
  5. Click the checkbox to turn warnings on or off.
  6. Click Save.

It can take up to 24 hours for your users to get these alerts after you turn them on. You can track settings changes in the Admin console audit log.

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