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Web Mail @ Work

John am Rhein

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It's a long time since I used an e-mail program such as Outlook or Thunderbird to handle my e-mail.


I use the web-based Yahoo! mail to access by BT (yes British!) mail account. Since the 'Ajax' technology took off the user interface of such things (Gmail from Google is another example) seems to be almost as good as Windows itself.


But when these web-mail services were first available, a lot of companies I worked at blocked access to them - one IT manager told me that access to Hotmail, etc. accounted for something like 40% of the company's internet traffic and this was why they blocked them (this was circa 2003).


Where I work now, there are no such restrictions - is that typically the case elsewhere or do places still block Hotmail/Gmail/Yahoo mail etc.?


Also, I always thought it likely that web-mail could actually benefit corporate IT systems by keeping viruses and other dubious attachments out of the corporate network (if an employee can't access his private mail, he's obviously far more likely to use the company e-mail address for private stuff and consequently more likely to receive something dodgy). Has anyone seen any evidence to verify whether this is or is not actually the case?

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