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Google mistakenly disabled Gmail accounts

Last week, we posted about “Google Accounts Disabled.” IDG News and Search Engine Roundtable discuss the “inappropriate disabling” of an unknown number of GMail accounts late last week. Google was apparently going after spammers and got a little overzealous. The company said that the outage affected less than 1 percent of all users and reportedly all the accounts that were wrongly disabled are back up. While GMail has millions of users it lags Yahoo Mail and Microsoft’s Hotmail in marketshare.

From IDG News Post:

A Google staffer writing under the name “Gmail Guide” posted a message on the company’s Gmail Help Discussion forum yesterday saying that the problem had been fixed. But today, some Gmail users were still complaining about being locked out of their accounts. The thread devoted to the disabled accounts contained a total of more than 160 postings as of 1:30 p.m. EST.

The problem came to light Wednesday night, when users of the e-mail service began reporting on the Gmail Help forum that they couldn’t access their accounts.

The Google staffer, who monitors the forum and posts messages on behalf of the company, acknowledged the existence of a problem Thursday afternoon. “I understand that some of you have had a frustrating experience with your accounts being inappropriately disabled,” Gmail Guide wrote. “Our team is aware of the problem, and our engineers are continuing to investigate.”

Several hours later, Gmail Guide declared that things were back to normal and wrote, “Our efforts to prevent breaches of our Terms of Use [policy] caused a number of users to be incorrectly identified” — meaning as spammers or other abusive users.[IDG News]

Google, Gmail, Spammers

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