CC and BCC in emails: how are they used?

Sending an email is something so routine in our daily lives that, sometimes, we forget the capabilities of email clients . We are talking about the CC and BCC functions, or how to send copies of emails to several recipients (with certain peculiarities) . Let’s see what CC means and the meaning of BCC, and in which cases each of them should be used.  

What is CC and BCC


CC stands for “carbon copy,” and is a field colloquially known as “with copy.” This field includes the email addresses to whom an email will be directed.

So how is it different from the “To” field? On a technical level there is no difference, since all email addresses in the “To” and “CC” fields are public (all recipients can see the addresses to whom the email has been sent).  

The difference is more of a functional nature. In the workplace, the “To” field is usually used to designate the primary recipient of the message, and the addresses included in the “CC” field of an email designate the secondary recipients of the message (who are considered to be informed of the message). mail thread, but who are not considered the main recipients).  

For their part, the email addresses included in BCC are hidden. The acronym CCO stands for “hidden carbon copy” (colloquially, analogously, “with blind copy”) . In this case, the address of any recipient included in this field is not revealed. 

What are they for and when are each of them used?


Emails with CC

Messages that contain copied addresses (CC field) are usually those in which the sender wants to distinguish levels between their recipients, and in which they also know to whom the email has been sent.

As we said before, it is very common to find work emails that have one or more primary recipients in the “To” field (to whom the email is actually addressed) and one or more secondary recipients in the “CC” field (whom the sender considers that they must be informed of what is said in the message).

Emails with BCC

Hidden carbon copy messages are widely used in email marketing, for example, when sending mass emails or informative or promotional newsletters. The reason for its success is its ability to protect the addresses of all recipients.

Therefore, the great advantage that the BCC field offers is that it preserves the identity of the recipients, in a way that allows compliance with the data protection regulations to which the company, entity or person sending the email is linked.

The choice to use CC and BCC usually responds to the purpose of the message. When we want an email to reach many people and they do not know who or how many it has been sent to, we will use “BCC”. If we want to establish priorities among the recipients of the email and for them to know about the other recipients, we will only use “To” and “CC”.