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(Emphasis added by me)Smith forgot to sign out of her personal Gmail account and the CEO ended up looking at it instead.
Actually, I know a lot of companies which use Gmail for their e-mail (including ours - although we host our domain with Google).
Gmail has excellent spam filters and collaboration features.
The difference here would be if the IT guys specifically set up that account for business purposes or not.
We did, and the employees know and have agreed to that fact.
The employees also know that all our computers and the associated data and any company correspondence belong to the company.
The key is having a company Internet Policy in place.
Gmail is an excellent solution for SMME companies who can't spend a lot on massive IT budgets.
It takes away the headache of setting up servers and handling security and backups.
And Gmail is the best of the web based e-mail providers. But some stupid companies still block the Gmail domain though.
Such SMME companies should just buy their own domain and then use that domain name instead of the Gmail domain.
But otherwise everything is run through Gmail.
We are an SMME with our own domain and domain email. We have all of our domain email forwarding to gmail accounts and a reply feature in gmail to reply as the domain.
By using gmail we have continuous backups of all email, smartphone capability (blackberry) and massive storage. We would need to invest in MSexchange in order to get the same in house list of services.
I think the CCMA ruling was fair. If the user was pulling her mail from GMAIL via POP to her computer I think the ruling may have been different. She was only using the companies connectivity to create the offending emails and without a company internet policy there was nothing cast in stone to say she could not use her personal gmail.