Email Encryption Explained

Using Email Encryption to Protect Your Business

Email encryption isn’t just for big businesses. It’s an important aspect that needs to be carried out by all businesses, organisations and even individuals.

What is email encryption?

Email encryption is one of the most vital aspects of email security. It is the process of sending emails to a recipient by disguising the content of the message. The idea is to make it harder for third-parties, whom the content is not for, to read the content within the email.

Email encryption will often include authentication that the receiver is the intended person to read the content.

How does email encryption work?

Learning how to encrypt email is an important process of business security. The technology that enables encryption is rather simple and is known as Public Key Infrastructure (PKI). There are two parts to this, the Public Key, that anyone can use, and the Private Key, that should never be shared.

When a person wants to send an email through encryption, they will encrypt the message with the public key. But the receiver can use their private key combined to read the original content.

Emails can also be double encrypted by first encrypting it with the private key and then encrypting a second time with the public key. The receiver can then use their private key to decrypt before using the public key to read the message.

What data should you encrypt with emails?

It isn’t just the email content that needs to be encrypted. You should also encrypt the connection from an email provider and the stored, archived or cached emails in your folders. The information that is contained within all of these areas is a treasure trove for hackers.

Why should businesses encrypt emails?

Emails are a very powerful tool for criminals looking to gain access to your computer systems or looking to gain a financial advantage. The first thing that can be contained is login credentials. An email sent in the clear can contain the login name for certain systems (i.e. the email address). And some people send their passwords in the clear. This allows criminals to gain access.

Another thing is that criminals can gain access to important data to initiate phishing campaigns. They can get important information on who decision-makers are, their email addresses and even some points that allow them to mimic key personnel within the organisation.

Finally, criminals can steal data that can compromise customer/supplier details. For instance, emails might have financial payment data or something that criminals can use to scam your customers. Some criminals can even sell this data to others in order to gain more financial gain.

The benefits of email encryption

The main benefit of email encryption is that it keeps data of the business secure. It protects you against fraud and cyber attacks that can be the end of your business. According to statistics, about 60% of small businesses will close within six months of a cyber attack, so giving yourself the maximum protection is important.

Another benefit is that encryption is vital for data protection compliance. If there is a breach, you could be called out for not securing emails.

If you would like to find out more about email security and encryption, speak to the experts at Spambrella. We’ll help you send emails securely at any time.