An administrator over the Google Apps (Gmail) account within my organization had some concerns about a user and discovered some problematic emails.

The user was suspended and Google Apps access revoked. The user didn't really do anything illegal, but it was against organizational policy, etc. There is some question of legal liability that has arisen.

The user who feels "violated" is now threatening that their account was accessed illegally and is saying he's looking into suing the administrator for getting into his email.

Everything we've read seems to indicate that any kind of email server (even a service like Google Apps/Gmail) is not considered private and that you can't do anything (legal or otherwise) about someone like an administrator or account owner accessing it.

Is this true?

  • 1
    Was the users account provided by the company or was it personal? Are we to assume USA?
    – BruceWayne
    Commented Dec 12, 2018 at 0:31
  • Yes, provided by the organization and is in the USA.
    – kewardicle
    Commented Dec 12, 2018 at 11:36

1 Answer 1


If this is a company provided account it is the company’s not the user’s. The user has no reasonable expectation of privacy.

  • Yes, the account was provided by the organization (ie, not a Gmail account directly, but a domain account for the org).
    – kewardicle
    Commented Dec 12, 2018 at 11:37

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