Mail/News : Web or Client?

From: Steve (
Date: 11/23/02

From: (Steve)
Date: 23 Nov 2002 06:14:56 -0800


I just started a new job with a small company ( 150 people ). They
let everyone know up front that they monitor internet usage.

I don't have a problem with that as I am moderate enough in my habits.
 I like to read my email at lunch and maybe go to 1-2 non work related
web sites. I like my Dilbert :)

Before anyone jumps on me I also know that the technology is there for
the company to get everything they want to see.

What I am concerned about is how easy it is to get particular types of
information and how that information appears to a person who is
monitoring a system.

First question. Is it easier for a small company, with small company
resources to see the __content_ of my email if I use yahoo or if I use
the mozilla client with ssl ? Is it easier for a company to see the
__content_ of my usenet posts if I use web based google or if I use
the mozilla usenet client?

A few jobs back I worked on a network product that among the many
things it did made it easy for any non-tech person to pull up url
logs. What impressed about the demonstrations of that feature is how
___BAD___ even a little web use looks. Just checking, replying, and
deleting a few emails from a web based email account produces a long
list of urls and at a gut level makes it look like the person is
"going to town".

Second question. Do logs that monitor someone using email via a
POP/SMTP client look as "BAD"? Does the monitor see a long list of
entries for a particular use or do they just see 1-2 lines stating
that a POP server was contacted?

Once again, I am fully aware that any company can monitor any computer
to any level they desire if they are so motivated. I'm just curious
about the ease of particular kinds of monitoring, and how each kind of
monitoring looks. Also, if I am better off using client based
mail/news or web based mail/news.

Thanks in advance


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