A college from the US sued the ex-administrator $ 250,000 for losing access to the organization’s Gmail account
In the world of information technology, something interesting happens every day. And it's not just the development of new devices, standards and software. The interesting happens in the relations of employers with subordinates. One of these stories, which happened in Indiana, USA, recently became known.
American College of Education (ACE) fired Administrator Triano Williams in April last year. Soon after, management realized that he no longer had access to college mail on Gmail. No, the dismissed administrator did nothing to block, he just had a working laptop with all the data for accessing the organization’s account.
The educational institution demanded to return the laptop, and got it back without any problems. But in July of this year, the college filed a lawsuit against its ex-administrator. The reason is that the former employee returned the laptop, but, according to the representatives of the college, before this the ex-employee destroyed all the information on the machine by installing a new operating system.
The lawsuit stated that as a result of such administrator actions, students lost access to college email accounts, which interfered with the work of an educational institution. Initially, the organization requested help from Google, but the corporation refused, because the administrator account at ACE was associated with the employee's personal mail.
From the administrator's explanation, it can be understood that what happened was due to the fact that another employee registered the account on Google, he made Williams the administrator of this account, but did not control it. After school representatives tried to log in to the account, the Gmail blocked it.
“Due to the fact that his personal e-mail address was specified in the administrator’s work account, we consider this a violation of the standard ACE protocol regarding administrative accounts,” the college said in a statement. “The ACE guide was not aware that Mr. Williams’s account was not linked to his work address.”
But all this stuff, the most interesting thing begins in the section of the text of the statement of the corporation, which says that Williams is for restoring access to the accountdemanded from college $ 200 000. At the same time, the college itself calculated the amount of damages associated with this incident. It turned out that they are quite high and amount to $ 500,000.
Williams does not agree with the charges. He filed a counterclaim last month, claiming that he quit because of bad attitude towards him from the college management. In general, discrimination based on race is also mentioned in the case , but this, as far as can be judged, is a common practice of many offended employees. Williams argues that the school forced him to move to Indianapolis, knowing that he could not do this for several reasons. Therefore, the former college administrator worked remotely.
He quit, in his own words, because he was paid less than light-skinned employees. He also accused the school of not being allowed to participate in meetings, either real or virtual, put in difficult situations and in general in every way prevented him from fulfilling his direct work duties.
At the same time, the court took the side of the college in September. Then, after hearing the plaintiff (that is, college), the court decided to pay $ 250,000 to the injured party (college). The court passed quickly. Since Williams simply did not appear in court, he automatically lost the lawsuit. True, this is only the first trial, so Williams has every chance of winning the counterclaim that he filed.
In the discussion on Slashdot, there are various points of view on who is right and who is wrong. Most of these opinions are based on emotions. But one comment still sheds light on what happened, explaining the actions of Williams. The author of the commentary, the user with the nickname quetwo, claims that Williams is not guilty here. As it turned out, the college worked on outsourcing with an IT company, where other employees had access to the college account. When the management of the latter fired the administrator, he sent a laptop to this organization. Presumably, after receiving the car, this company did something that led to account blocking or password change. Only one person from outside the company had access to the college account, Williams.
But it seems that his personal account has been removed from the list of college account administrators. And the ex-administrator himself did not want to help restore access. Therefore, the educational institution decided to force him to do it through the courts. Williams could not come to the lawsuit, because he did not live in Indiana and could not arrive on time. According to a number of Slashdot users, if the respondent would have arrived at the first court hearing, he would have won the process. But he did not, and lost. Nevertheless, he still has time, and the ex-administrator may well win repetitive processes.