The year is ending terribly for Samsung, but it won’t be alone. Yahoo is on the same boat after it admitted to have “assisted” the US government in spying on its Yahoo Mail users. Matters have gotten so bad that Verizon, who is acquiring Yahoo, is looking into slashing its price by more than half. It isn’t surprising that there would be users eager to jump ship, but reports are coming in claiming that Yahoo is making it nearly impossible to do so. How? By “temporarily” disabling Yahoo Mail’s auto-forwarding feature.
Auto-forwarding is commonly seen as a critical feature in helping users migrate from one e-mail service to another. It has also been a staple found in almost all such services. In fact, Yahoo Mail has had that too. But it was suspiciously disabled just recently, at the height of the company’s controversy.
The Yahoo help pages states that:
“This feature is under development. While we work to improve it, we’ve temporarily disabled the ability to turn on Mail Forwarding for new forwarding addresses. If you’ve already enabled Mail Forwarding in the past, your email will continue to forward to the address you previously configured.”
In light of recent events, some see this as Yahoo’s not so subtle way to prevent a mass exodus of Mail users. And given what the company has proven to be willing to do, some would readily believe it to be so. Especially when you add in the report that British Telecom (BT) users, whose email service has been outsourced to Yahoo, discovered that not only was auto-forwarding disabled, deleting accounts was also disabled. Notifications to users claimed that the feature will be available by the end of September, but doesn’t say which year.
Yahoo later reached out to TechCrunch to insist that the auto-forwarding feature is really undergoing maintenance and will soon be available again. It doesn’t say when, however, and doesn’t also mention the BT situation. Funnily enough, Yahoo recommends using its multiple account features instead, which would mean users will add those other, non-Yahoo accounts under Yahoo’s care.