E-mail Access at Work

  pcdimwit 21:15 27 May 04
Locked

Generally colleagues at my place of work have not used Company e-mail system for personal messages.

Instead we have accessed web based mail and used it typically during rest breaks.

Guess what - the lunatic in charge of IT has put a software block on web mail preventing access at anytime of day. Talk about being extreme !

Q. Anyone else suffered same situ ?
Q. Alternatives please. Is there web based mail that the blocking systems cannot detect ?

  Peter 21:19 27 May 04

.

Have you tried registering with Yahoo and seeing if you can access it while at work?

Peter.

  Chris the Ancient 21:19 27 May 04
  ventanas 21:41 27 May 04

With respect, he is not a lunatic, but a very sensible person. Web based mail goes straight to your workstation, and not through any mail server, and is therefore likely to bypass any protection that you have, greatly increasing the risk of infection.

I too have blocked all known web based mail sites, for just this reason. As for your question about alternatives, just consider the risk you would be taking if you discovered one. I would dismiss anyone immediately for doing this, and everyone knows it.

  end 23:56 27 May 04

where I work, we "have been warned and advised" that very sophisticated programs are on the computer system, that they KNOW when you log in ( we each have a username ,and a password that we change every 4 weeks ), they know which sites you visit and what you are doing.I frequently "warn" people about the use OF the internet; omeof the stuff they get up to , I think, beggars belief...BUT...THEY are the ons who will "have to answer" and have their computer access withdrawn.....


AND,, I make sure that NO ONE gets my username or passowrd..


and..on a "brigher" note...THEY re paying for th electricity to run the computer and paying YOU o be at WORK...SO...is the " activity"- if you "take the point to its logical conclusion"--actually "stealing " time etc from the company?????

  Sir Radfordin 23:59 27 May 04

Chris' link covers most of the points so start with a read there. If your company chose to block access to webmail then it would be a 'fool' who chooses to find a way around this. Policies should be followed, even if you don't agree with them.

Why not consider taking it up with your line manager or someone with authority to get it changed. Webmail is something that is a serious risk to company networks and I took would ban its use.

  pcdimwit 07:15 28 May 04

Thanks for the advice everyone.

OK so I'm on the retreat and perhaps words like 'lunatic' just go to show the feeling of frustration amongst the workforce (we are essentially a non IT industry sector).

Whilst now understanding the other side of the debate it must be stressed that no one from IT has ever expressed we should not be using web mail.

The IT group are not the best of communicators and perhaps this is the fundamental problem.

The web mail was only being used during rest periods and now people are leaving site during this time with often no-one to answer the phones. So the end result is hurting business.

  Andybear 07:24 28 May 04

You have rest periods? We have a lunch break but that's it.

  Sir Radfordin 07:44 28 May 04

What you show is how often business decisions are made in isolated circumstances. The IT boys no doubt think there is a risk to business by allowing access to webmail and so ban it. They don't realise that it may not be such a significant risk and that the motivation of the workforce will be dented.

Non-work use of IT resources is however a significant cost to organisations and should be monitored. I would argue that in your rest periods you are better going 'off site' than staying at work in front of a computer since that will prevent you from 'resting'.

Like I said before, why not talk to your line manager and see if something can't be worked out.

  stlucia 09:00 28 May 04

Web-based email was disabled a short time ago at the place I work. I used it (in my lunch break) because it was quicker than my home dial-up.

But we have anti virus software on our PCs as well as (presumably) on the network server. So, how can nasties get into the system simply by us accessing reputable web-based email sites? Is there not the same risk from other web sites that we're still able to access and download files from?

  techpro 09:59 28 May 04

I think the point is you're more likely to find a virus in an attachment to an email than in a download from a web site. And because of the way these worms spread, it's more likely to be a new virus that the anti-virus hasn't been updated to detect yet.

Webmail is a weak point in the protection that firms build around their systems, and given the cost (which the company has to pay) of cleaning up if a virus gets in, it's not surprising that they want to stop it.

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