Corporate “Oops” Empties Email Accounts

    January 25, 2008

There are worse things that one could find in an email account – foreclosure notices, death announcements, and so on – but for 14,000 people, finding nothing at all was pretty bad.  The blame for the deletions lies with Charter Communications.

Charter is a St. Louis-based telecommunications corporation; according to its website, it has about 5.7 million customers in 29 states.  Many of those customers have moved on to using Gmail, Hotmail, and other services instead of the company-provided email, however, and it was (sort of) as a result of this that 14,000 Charter email accounts are now empty.Corporate "Oops" Empties Email Accounts

The St. Louis Business Journal reports, "Charter’s Anita Lamont said the company typically performs routine maintenance on email accounts that have gone unused for more than three months and during this process a technical error occurred that deleted some 14,000 active e-mail accounts.  Thus, all e-mails for those accounts had been cleared and lost."

There is a bright side, though – affected customers have received a $50 credit by way of apology.  Your humble author would happily take $50 in order to have a bunch of spam or some chain letters cleaned up.

Yet I’m going to make a point of backing up some important things today, and would suggest that you do the same.