I received an e-mailed seasonal greeting from a big company today. Not a faceless bureaucracy, but one of those High Street names that is very recognisable and tries to be user friendly. All very festive you might think, but I couldn’t help but notice the footnote to their message which somewhat subverted their expression of goodwill. It said:
This message is private and confidential and it is intended exclusively for the addressee. If you receive this message by mistake, you should not disseminate, distribute or copy this e-mail. Please inform the sender and delete the message and attachments from your system. No confidentiality nor any privilege regarding the information is waived or lost by any mistransmission or malfunction. E-mail transmission cannot be guaranteed to be secure, confidential, or error-free, as information could be intercepted, corrupted, lost, destroyed, arrive late, incomplete, or contain viruses. XXX does not accept responsibility for any changes in the contents of this message after it has been sent.
This message is provided for informational purposes and should not be construed as a solicitation or offer to buy or sell any securities or related financial instruments.”
Somewhere between the marketing department and the financial compliance regulator is a dustbin full of festivity.