Should businesses use email encryption software?

5 min read
Should businesses use email encryption software?

Yes, every business that uses email should use email encryption software. Considering that 9 out of 10 employees rely on email to do their jobs, when it comes to protecting your sensitive data in transit, the stakes are high.

Most email clients, like Gmail and Outlook, have a level of encryption set up by default called TLS — which stands for Transport Layer Security. While better than nothing, TLS has a few limitations that make it insufficient as a security measure for most businesses.

 

How does TLS encryption work?

TLS encryption secures email correspondence by encrypting messages as they travel between email servers. When an email is sent using TLS, the sender’s email server will send a request to the recipient’s to see if it can receive TLS-encrypted emails. If compatible, the email is encrypted and sent to the recipient’s inbox, along with the protocols and ciphers needed for the server to decrypt the message.

Is TLS encryption secure for business email?

TLS presents a significant security gap for business email. If the recipient’s email provider doesn’t accept TLS encrypted email, the email will be sent as a standard unencrypted email and is at risk of being intercepted in transit. To make matters worse, the sender is unaware that their email has been sent unencrypted. With no way of knowing their data is even at risk, identifying a potential data breach and taking corrective action will take that much longer and cost significantly more.

Another security drawback of TLS is that it protects an email in transit, but not at rest. In other words, once an email is received and sitting in the recipient's inbox, the information in that email is no longer encrypted and can be accessed by anyone who has access to that inbox.

Is Zivver advanced encryption more secure than TLS?

Zivver Email Security takes encryption further to fill the security gaps of TLS encryption.

  • TLS only encrypts emails if the recipient server is compatible, so your email security entirely depends on factors outside of your control. Unlike TLS, we use advanced encryption to avoid this issue. The data in an email that’s encrypted by Zivver is protected regardless of the recipient's email client.
  • While TLS only protects emails in transit, Zivver also protects emails at rest — after they have been received. We achieve this through multi-factor authentication (MFA), where recipients need to input a time-based one-time password (TOTP) to access their email. This keeps email content safe from anyone who’s hacked their way into the recipient’s inbox.

Zivver takes email security to the next level

To make email security as convenient as possible, our software uses machine learning to identify sensitive email content, such as financial data, and then prompts the user to encrypt the message. In a single click, you can rest assured the email is encrypted and fully secure.

Another unique feature of Zivver Secure Email is how we encrypt messages and manage the encryption key. Unlike other email encryption providers, we don’t store this decryption key — so the only people who can ever access an encrypted email are the sender and the intended recipient.

Find out how Zivver can reduce email security risk for your organization with advanced encryption and other smart security features.

First published -
Last updated - 28/10/22
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