If you opened your Gmail account yesterday only to find that it was empty, you’re not alone. About 150,000 people, or 0.08 percent of Gmail’s total users, had their inboxes wiped out yesterday.
Google has been investigating this problem and restoring account data as it’s able to. As of 1:15 p.m. today, Google had restored the inboxes of many affected accounts. The firm noted that the rest of the accounts “are being restored on an ongoing basis.”
One of the disadvantages to cloud computing, in which your information isn’t stored in a physical file on your computer, is that your information is subject to a fair amount of risk because it’s not within your control or possession. While major companies like Google are relatively trustworthy and safe, the information stored in their clouds can nevertheless be compromised.
If you’re worried about losing the data you have stored in a cloud, consider backing it up. Many webmail programs, Gmail included, let users forward incoming messages to a second account. Programs like Microsoft Office allow you to physically download the messages to your computer. There are also back-up programs that will store your data for you for a small fee.
We’re confident that Google will be able to restore all of its users’ email accounts. However, let this serve as a lesson that anything worth saving in your inbox is worth backing up.