04-09-2013

Your Email is not private

In papers filed in a US court recently, Google asserted that users of its free Gmail email service should have “No legitimate expectation of privacy” and that Gmail users give implied consent to the automated processing of emails. This clarification has major implications for all companies using email services.

Coming closely behind the recent revelations about email scanning by national intelligence agencies, Google’s claim simply emphasises something that IT professionals have long argued: that conventional email is not a secure medium.  Standard email has been likened to sending your confidential information through the postal system written on the back of a postcard. It is relatively safe being hidden in plain sight amongst the millions of other items but for someone who wants to read your email, the technology to do so is relatively simple. Adding to the footer of an email that it is confidential and must only be read by the person for whom it is intended is of limited value. The answers are simple; use a specialist email provider, encrypt your emails and ensure that you have an email policy in place.

Whilst technology solutions are half the battle in ensuring that your confidential information remains confidential, of equal importance is to ensure that your staff policies engender a culture where confidentiality is respected and guidelines are adhered to.

If you would like assistance in ensuring that your email, and other employee, policies are legally compliant, contact us on 01246 560560