You have to admire Yahoo Finance for its journalistic objectivity (or its algorithmic precision). On Wednesday, the news feed contained an article titled “Want to Dump Your Yahoo Email? Here’s how.
It’s a pertinent topic, give the staggering data breach that hit Yahoo in 2013. This week, the company announced that all of its three billion accounts were affected, not the one billion previously believed.
Still, one wonders how the C suite felt about the article. Not that Yahoo wrote the piece itself — it’s from Consumer Reports. But it’s there, and it offers pretty sound advice.
It starts by saying that this week’s news “could prompt many consumers with Yahoo email addresses to switch services — that is, if the company's previous security lapses haven't already sent them toward the exits.”
The article goes on to say that jumping is easy.
“Email service providers are more than happy to nab one another’s customers, so many offer features to import data from one service to another,” Consumer Reports writes.
It continues, “If you're switching to Gmail from another service, click “Import Mail and Contacts” under the Accounts and Import tab and enter your account credentials; Google can pull from Yahoo, Outlook, and AOL.”
In fairness, the piece even outlines how to switch to Yahoo — “if anyone wants to do that.” And it adds this tip:
“Both Windows and the Mac operating system have native mail and contacts clients that can sync data with online accounts. If you use those built-in tools, you need to tell them about your new email account.”
So what does it all mean?
Well, first, given this week’s news, Verizon can be forgiven for wondering whether has bought a pig in a poke when it acquired Yahoo. It had reduced the purchase price for Yahoo by $350 million — we wonder if there’s a contingency provision that will enable it to recover more.
As for the Consumer Reports article, it may have been in progress prior to this week’s news: it references the one billion accounts stolen, but not all three billion.
Then there is the confusing status of the people who were told in March that Verizon was exiting the email space, and that they had move, presumably to AOL, which like Yahoo, is now wrapped up in the Oath brand.
That included several million accounts. So between that and a possible exodus from Yahoo Mail, Oath could end up with a much less robust email service.
And that will probably lead to even more accounts for Gmail.