Email communications can expose data because emails have to travel outside your network. Encryption is a strategy that makes sense for any industry where sensitive information is likely to be shared via emails, including healthcare, insurance, financial services and research and development.
Encrypted email services
Emails are at the core of communications and daily workflows. They are a must-have tool to keep team members connected throughout the day, but it’s important to assess and mitigate the risks associated with this method of communication.
Risks are lower when two team members use email to communicate within the boundaries of a private network, but sending an email to a third party means sending it through different servers. If one of those servers is compromised or if the email is intercepted in transit, sensitive data could be exposed.
Email encryption is the best way to protect messages in transit since it makes the content of your messages useless if they are intercepted.
Who needs email encryption?
Email encryption is a strategy that protects your communications and prevents leaks. Deploying an encryption solution also helps to meet compliance requirements and improve safety and privacy. Here are some industries that need email encryption:
- Email encryption is one of the best practices associated with HIPAA compliance to protect individuals’ health information (PHI).
- If someone processes credit card payments, they have to meet PCI DDS compliance requirements. Email encryption adds a layer of security by protecting the invoices and other sensitive information sent via email.
- Financial services. Email encryption is a crucial element of Sarbanes-Oxley compliance since the sender needs to protect communications with clients.
- Human resources. Email encryption helps to protect employee data, enhances privacy and abides by employment law.
- Research and development. Failing to secure communications could result in valuable intellectual property being leaked.
What is email encryption?
Encrypting data renders it useless if intercepted. A user who doesn’t have the proper authorization can’t read the email and its content.
When a person implements encryption, emails aren’t sent in text form. An encoded version of the email is sent instead, and the message has to be decoded with a special key before the recipient can read its content.
It’s difficult to ensure that emails go only through secure servers since the user doesn’t have control over the servers outside the network. The best approach to securing email communications is to make the data impossible to read and use if it’s compromised.
How does email encryption work?
The recipient of an encrypted email will not receive the content of the email itself. They will receive a message with a link to a secure portal. They can retrieve the contents of the encrypted message by logging in to the portal. The portal requires email registration to gain access and decrypts the content of an email only if the user is authorized to see it.
SecureTech offers an email encryption tool designed to help secure your communications. The sender can use that tool to meet compliance requirements for many industries and protect valuable data. Our email encryption tool gives the ability to manage authorizations by using requests for information so the user can verify the domain name and identity of the users who receive potentially sensitive information.