As a student soon to be graduated, I a looking for my first job. I have been fortunate enough to have a recruitment process with several companies.

One of those companies sent me a mail, asking me the usual personal information in those processes. The issue here is that the mail has been sent to every other candidate, or at least it looks so (usual personal @gmail.com addresses, instead of @company.com, like the person who contacted me), and we can clearly see the other addresses in this mail.

Should I bring this issue up in my response ? Or should I simply ignore the fact that others now have my email and name (since my email consists of my name)?

Moreover, I am based in Europe; wouldn't that be forbidden with the new GDPR law?

  • 38
    Google all of the names that where CCed and checkout your competition. The other candidates will be doing that now that they know your name. Who they've selected as candidates tells you a lot about the job they're trying to fill. Use that information to better prepare for an interview. Focus right now on getting job. Ignore these distractions. Say nothing about this until after you've been hired.
    – user7360
    Jul 13, 2018 at 16:34
  • 4
    Consider that a recruiter that knowingly breaks GDPR and can't even be bothered hiding it from the victims is probably not going to be very good at recruiting, nor give a hoot about safeguarding your details.
    – smci
    Jul 13, 2018 at 23:40

5 Answers 5


This has happened to me before as well - people filling in the To: or CC: field rather than BCC: field. Do reply to it saying that they used the incorrect field, but don't be hostile about it.

I don't think it's a data privacy issue since contact information doesn't really count as private information, otherwise phone books and public registers would not be a thing. This part is wrong and contact information is nowadays considered private information???!!!

Just make sure you have 2 factor authentication enabled on all services you use and don't reuse passwords.

  • 21
    It's not just about contact information - it's also about knowing who else is applying for a certain job. You never know when a coworker or your boss's friend will also be on the same list.
    – David K
    Jul 13, 2018 at 14:39
  • 5
    In many jurisdictions contact information is considered private. Those public registers usually have to ask permission before they publish such information. Jul 13, 2018 at 16:13
  • 19
    I agree with the advice/actual actions to be taken. But with GDPR, your email address specifically is Personally Identifiable Information, and having it shared along with the fact you applied to a specific company - would definitely be a breach. (Although I still agree your answer is correct, and no further action really needs taken over a relatively innocent breach like that).
    – user81330
    Jul 13, 2018 at 16:31
  • 13
    This answer is completely wrong as regards contact information not being data covered by GDPR. It is. Jul 13, 2018 at 17:21
  • 4
    I do not recommend the advice in this answer. If you're a candidate for a position, the last thing you want to do is to stick out in this way. You'll come across as condescending to your recruiter, which isn't going to help you in the job hunt at all. Ignore it, unless you want to push the GDPR side (which it seems too minor to worry about).
    – Joe
    Jul 13, 2018 at 17:37

Politely ignore the fact that this has happened (it was probably supposed to be BCC rather than CC).

Make sure of course that you don't "Reply All" when you reply.

Raise this if the recruiter makes a habit of it though.


As you're in Europe, this is pretty clearly a breach of GDPR. The more practical question is what to do about it without risking any opportunities the recruiter may offer you.

I'd opt for replying as normal, and just add a short note bringing the mistake to the recruiters attention:

By the way, I noticed you included a number of other candidates email addresses in the Cc field of your email. I'm sure this was accidental, but I felt I should make you aware in case you need to make any changes to your mailing process, especially in light of the new GDPR regulations.

That way, you're bringing the issue (and the potential seriousness) to their attention, without assigning any blame or making a big deal out of it. If they brush off your concerns, then you can escalate accordingly.

  • 10
    [...]"can escalate accordingly." - - - - or just run away. People with bad practices [usually] make up for a bad work environment. Jul 13, 2018 at 20:08
  • @Mindwin Or do both: escalate to authorities outside the company and run away. Although I personally think reporting them to authorities is overblowing the issue (one reason why I'm not a fan of this sort of regulation).
    – jpmc26
    Jul 14, 2018 at 1:05

This happens all the time, I'm afraid - even from individuals and organisations who really should know better. I think it's fine to politely let them know, but I wouldn't bother quoting the rulebook unless you're sure of the regulations.


It should not happen, but it happens. Whether you think you can trust that company enough to accept a job offer is your decision.

When/If you reply, don’t be the one who clicks “reply to all”. If other applicants send their details to you then I would love to hear about it.

  • Well, it has been four days, and no one used the "Reply to all" option. Such a shame, I would have loved to have more information. If I have any chance, I'll keep you noticed.
    – superpg
    Jul 17, 2018 at 6:37

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