Goldman Sachs Asks Court To Have Google Delete An Email With Client Info; Google Blocks Access To The Email
from the this-again dept
Five years ago, we wrote a story about how Rockey Mountain Bank in Wyoming accidentally sent a bunch of confidential information to the wrong Gmail account, then took Google to court to try to find out who received the email. Google demanded a court order first, leading a judge to (ridiculously) order the company to shut down the entire email account. It appears that something somewhat similar may have just happened with a more recognizable bank name: Wall Street giant Goldman Sachs went to court recently to order Google to delete an errant email containing confidential client information. According to the filing (which most news sites haven’t posted, for reasons unknown):
On June 23, 2014, an employee of the consulting firm was testing changes to Goldman Sachs?s internal reporting and validation process. The employee intended to send a copy of the internal report to the email address provided to her by Goldman Sachs, which is in the form ?[first name].[last name]@gs.com,? but instead mistakenly sent a copy of the internal report to an address in the form ?[first name].[last name]@gmail.com.? She is not the owner of the gmail address.
The mistakenly sent email contains certain account and client related information (the ?Confidential Client Information?). Goldman Sachs?s clients have a right to maintain the confidentiality of the Confidential Client Information. Furthermore, Goldman Sachs has an obligation to protect the privacy of its customers? confidential information.
Goldman Sachs has made efforts to retrieve, have deleted or otherwise protect the mistakenly sent Confidential Client Information. As part of those efforts, on June 26, 2014, Goldman Sachs sent an email to the gmail address to which the information was mistakenly sent requesting that it be promptly deleted and that the recipient confirm in writing that s/he had done so. There has been no response.
Goldman also contacted Google directly, and as in the Rocky Mountain case, Google told Goldman to go to court first. Late yesterday, Goldman Sachs noted that Google has told the company that it has blocked access to that particular email and that the email in question had not yet been accessed by anyone. It appears that Google did this despite the lack of a court order, which may seem a bit questionable. Given the nature of the situation, and the fact that Goldman has actually gone to court and requested this, it does seem a bit more reasonable that Google agreed to at least temporarily block access to that particular email until a court decides if it needs to continue blocking it permanently.