Suspicious Mail

In the event a threat is received by letter, it should be preserved for investigation by OU Police for possible fingerprints, and should not be handled once the letter has been opened.

OU Police should also be notified of any suspicious letters or packages received (whether or not a specific threat is contained therein) at any location on campus.

How to identify suspicious mail

USPS guide to identifying suspicious mail 

  • Restrictive markings (e.g., “Personal”)
  • Postmark city different from return address
  • Fictitious, unfamiliar or no return address
  • Excessive postage
  • Address to title only (e.g., “Vice President”)
  • Wrong title with name
  • Badly typed or written addresses
  • Misspelled words
  • Rigid or bulky
  • Protruding wires or tin foil
  • Strange odor
  • Oily stains on wrapping or lopsided package
  • Sloshing sounds – possible liquid contents
  • Excessive wrapping materials such as strapping tape or string
  • Exceptionally heavy for size
Procedures to follow

If you perceive a potential threat or suspicious letter/package:

  • Do not open the mail.
  • Double-bag the letter or package in a zip-lock type plastic bag using latex gloves.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Notify your immediate supervisor, University Mail Services Manager or Director of Property Management, and OU Police.
  • Ensure that all persons who have touched the letter/package wash their hands with soap and water.
  • List all persons who have touched the letter/package with contact information.