The 30,000 staff members at the University of California Davis are no longer using Gmail as their e-mail provider. The university had been testing Google’s e-mail service since August 2009, in hopes to eventually roll it out to the entire campus population. However, university officials say that the e-mail service isn’t secure or private enough to meet their standards.
Quite a few staff members had privacy concerns, many of which stemmed from Google Buzz, the social network embedded within Gmail. In a letter from the university to Google, school officials wrote that the staff members “expressed concerns that our campus’ commitment to protecting the privacy of their communications is not demonstrated by Google and that the appropriate safeguards are neither in place at this time nor planned for in the near future.”
This is not the first time Google has lost a major deal because of privacy concerns. Last month Yale University pulled the plug on Google due to the security and technical risks involved with Google Buzz. On the contrary, last October government officials in Los Angeles voted to sign a five-year contract with Google to make Gmail their official e-mail provider.
School officials at Davis say they will continue experimenting with other e-mail services until they have found a service that suits their needs.