Google Fixes Gmail Bug That Kept Sending Emails - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Cloud // Software as a Service
News
8/27/2010
01:52 PM
50%
50%
RELATED EVENTS
The Real Impact of a Data Security Breach
Aug 02, 2017
In this webcast, experts discuss the real losses associated with a breach, both in the data center ...Read More>>

Google Fixes Gmail Bug That Kept Sending Emails

Emails were being dispatched to the same recipients, sometimes multiple times per day, even when deleted from Gmail, resulting in spam warnings and blacklisting.




Slideshow: Cloud Security Pros And Cons
(click for larger image and for full photo gallery)
A portion of Gmail users recently got a little something extra with their email: repeat deliveries. In particular, over a period of up to 5 days, emails of various ages kept being dispatched to the same recipients, sometimes multiple times per day. Aggrieved users of the free service -- but which is also the webmail client for the Premier Edition of GoogleApps, for which subscribers pay -- hit the Google support forums. Many complained that their emails kept getting re-sent even when deleted from Gmail, resulting in spam warnings and getting their email addresses blacklisted.

Awkward situations also seemed to abound. One user complained that an email previously sent to the "alert all hands" company pager number was resulting in all-hours pager alerts for every company employee. Another spoke of their email recipient's IT department, not expecting the problem to have originated with Google, going over its own email servers with a fine-toothed comb. Google acknowledged the problem early Thursday morning and apologized, noting that "we're experiencing an issue affecting less than 2.5% of the Google Mail user base," which prohibited users from accessing Google Mail, and for some, also resulted in their messages being re-sent.

"We are working to implement a fix for this issue, after which point some of these messages may be re-sent one final time," said Google.

Even 2.5% of a Google service's user base, however, is sizeable. Indeed, by one estimate, Gmail had 176 million users in December 2009, meaning that over 4 million people may have been affected. By Thursday night, Google said it had fully resolved the problem. "No more duplicate emails should be going out at this point and new messages you send out now should not be affected by this issue," according to a support forum post by a Google employee identified as MrEvan,

"Sincerest apologies for the inconvenience this has caused you," he wrote. "While I can't take the messages back with some sort of magical Undo Send, I totally sympathize with your situation."

FURTHER READING:

Gmail Gets Intruder Alarm

Google Fortifies Enterprise Message Security

First Impressions: Making Phone Calls From Gmail

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
IT Strategies to Conquer the Cloud
Chances are your organization is adopting cloud computing in one way or another -- or in multiple ways. Understanding the skills you need and how cloud affects IT operations and networking will help you adapt.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll