How to Choose a Specialized Company for Email Encryption Services

The purpose of using email encryption is to protect your email messages and attachments from eavesdroppers. With so many email encryption solutions available, it can be difficult to choose the best one for your organization.

To make things easy for you we have listed down a 5-point checklist of what to look for in a specialized company for email encryption services.

1. Does the Company Offer Host, Shared Email Encryption Solution?

Email encryption is difficult to implement in the way we want it to work. Accessing portals and using passwords are some of the extra steps that make things frustrating for the users. The shared email encryption technology automatically encrypts mails sent over the network without any input or additional action from the user.

2. Does the Company Offer Policy-Based Email Encryption?

Majority of the email encryption solutions are trigger-based where the user has to click a specific button or put a tag in the subject line to encrypt the email. However, there is always a possibility of error on the human side. Hence, you need to look for policy-based email encryption feature that will ensure the email will always travel in an encrypted form on the Internet.

Email encryption solution supporting policy based filters scan every outgoing message from the server and encrypt messages that contain sensitive information.

3. Is the Email Encryption Solution Easy to Use?

Email is a primary tool of communication for businesses and employees are more likely to use it frequently. Ideally, the email encryption solution must be easy to use for both the sender and the recipient. If the email encryption solution is difficult for users, they might make mistakes, circumvent the encryption system, or spend lots of time on email encryption that will reduce their productivity.

Easy to use email encryption services would foster adoption and compliance which would ensure the outbound emails are encrypted automatically before leaving the server and inbound emails are decrypted at the gateway before they arrive in user’s inbox.

4. What Forms of Email Encryption Technologies Are Available?

Email encryption is available in two forms – symmetric and asymmetric. Both encryption technologies come in basic forms that determine their cost price.

Symmetric

Symmetric form of email encryption model is made of two components – a shared secret (key) and encryption algorithm. The secret key (password) is known by both parties sender and receiver and should be agreed by both parties. The secret key is used to encrypt email and also to decrypt mail. Symmetric email encryption method is easiest to implement.

Asymmetric

Also known as Public Key encryption, it has two components – Public Key and Private Key. The Public key is used to encrypt messages while the user has to use his own Private Key to decrypt the message. In this model, every party is assigned a Public Key and a Private Key. The Public key is known to both parties (sender and recipient)

When you need to send an encrypted message to a particular party, you need to encrypt it using the receiver’s Public key. When the message is received by the user, he/she uses his/her Private Key to decrypt the message. One good thing about this encryption method is only your private key can decrypt the message that is encrypted by using your Public key. The public key cannot decrypt the message.

5. What Kind of Email Encryption Strength Is Offered?

The email encryption strength is quoted in bits which is actually the size of a key. Some of the popular email encryption strengths offered are 128 bit, 256 bit, 1024 bits or even 2048 bits. If you use Symmetric encryption model, you can use 256-bit encryption.

If you use PKI (Public Key Infrastructure), you need a stronger encryption strength like 1024-bit. You can even consider 2048-bit encryption which is slowly becoming an industry standard for sensitive data. PKI encryption model needs stronger encryption strength because there are multiple keys possible to decrypt email.

This 5-point checklist would be enough for you to find and make an informed decision about the specialized company for email encryption services.

Did we miss any important point in selecting the right company for email encryption solutions? Please feel free to comment.

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