[SpamCop-List] Re: Is a company-wide e-mail spam?
nobody at spamcop.net
Sat May 15 00:34:09 EDT 2004
On Fri, 14 May 2004 11:07:26 -0400, "Firewoman" <nobody at spamcop.net>
>We send out company wide e-mails from time to time, notifying employees
>about changes or events in the company. We use e-mail addresses that are
>provided to us on a standard hire form.
Several things come to mind. First, if these are private e-mail
addresses (and from the context, it appears they are), then you are
not sending company-wide e-mail. To be company-wide, the e-mail would
need to go through a company e-mail system to each mailbox in the
The content of the e-mail is another problem. If this were some legal
announcement, it should be sent via snail-mail to the employee's home
address (e-mail is not secure).
Being more of a newsletter in nature (again, implied by your post),
suggests that it is just that - a newsletter sent to all employees who
have provided an e-mail address.
If I were to receive something like that from my employer, I'd be
asking a number of questions, one of which was if they actually sent
it. Under the premise that they did, I would be asking them to stop
with no reason given.
If they would ask for a reason, I would say that I consider company
information to be confidential and that my e-mail is anything but
secure and therefore, it can be read by any hacker... possibly
exposing the company in ways not intended.
Usually company information (i.e., changes, events) is considered to
be company confidential and some companies treat releasing such
information to the public to be a dismissible offense -- don't be
shocked, I got one of those today - in my company-provided e-mail on
my company-provided computer.
>Should I be setting up these e-mails as opt-in? What would the
>ramifications be if a company sent out e-mails to their employees and were
>reported by many to spamcop? Does this seem to be a trend in the ISP world,
>and if it is, how are corporations with outside mail servers handling it?
Actually, there's nothing wrong with outsourcing your computer
facilities. What's wrong is that it isn't staying on outsourced or
company-owned equipment and is going to non-outsourced resources
(i.e., employee's private e-mail accounts). That's why "outside" ISPs
The real problem occurs when a person leaves the company. What happens
then? Do they continue to receive these announcements? I suspect they
do, knowing that dismissals are not for public dissemination (at least
in America when HR practices are often dictated by law). At that
point, the e-mails become spam and could be viewed as harassment
(another very bad thing). If the e-mail account is company-property
(that is, owned, paid-for, and controlled by the company), then this
former employee should not have access to the e-mail account and it
>I'll take any and all opinions. Thanks much in advance :)
Don't send e-mail. Have HR generate mailing lists when required and
snail-mail the information, or, better yet, have the supervisors
distribute the information by hand in person.
I can see a small company doing something like this, but they really
should seek some legal advice before doing so, mostly because of the
legal ramifications of using a non-secure system to distribute what
could be company-confidential information.
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