With all the current fuss about the alleged NSA surveillance on digital communications in the U.S. and the recent shutdown of Lavabit, the famous encrypted email service provider of Edward Snowden, citizens of the world wide web have opt for security measures to boost their privacy and security. In answer to such demand, Streak–a customer relationship management company– introduces SecureGmail, a browser extension that enables Gmail users to send encrypted emails.
Using SecureGmail is easy. This article will give you a good look on how SecureGmail enhances one\’s mail security by just a few clicks. First, download the add-on from Streak\’s website by clicking on the Install SecureGmail button. A pop-up window will appear to ask for your confirmation.
Using SecureGmail is easy. This article will give you good look on how SecureGmail enhances one\’s mail security by just a few clicks. First, download the add-on from Streak\’s website by clicking on the Install SecureGmail button. A pop-up window will appear to ask for your confirmation.
After SecureGmail is installed, you will be redirected to Gmail\’s webpage. Notice the presence of the lock button beside compose. Click on that icon, and the usual compose box will appear, but this time in a red window and with the sign – Secured.
Fill in the recipient, subject, and body of the email just like in your regular emailing sessions.
When all necessary input has been made, press Send Encrypted and a window asking for an Encryption Password will pop. You can also provide a hint, in case the email recipient might forget the passphrase. Then, Encrypt & Send.
On the recipient\’s end, you will see that the message is encrypted, and the Decrypt message with password must be successfully carried out in order for the email to be deciphered.
Upon an attempt to decrypt the email, the Decryption Password will be asked and must be provided.
If the correct key is supplied, the decoded message will be displayed.
As apparently this has not been officially integrated in the Gmail system, SecureGmail have some limitations that comes with its free service. The following are enumerated below:
- SecureGmail is currently exclusive to Google Chrome.
- For correspondence to be possible, i.e. encryption-decryption, the email recipient is also required to install the extension inorder to decrypt the message.
- Messages composed via the encrypted mode can not and will not be saved as Draft.
- Recipients can not directly reply to the encrypted email, a new composition is required.
All in all, despite the aforementioned restriction in features of SecureGmail, it is still a valuable tool if one is really hard on security and privacy when it comes to sending emails. As of the moment, it is still the best possible alternative to Lavabit and SafeGmail.