Google announced on Friday that Gmail’s client-side encryption is in beta for workspace and education customers, protecting emails sent using the web version of the platform.
This development comes at a time when online privacy and data security concerns are at an all-time high, and is welcomed by users who value the protection of their personal data.
As such, Google Workspace Enterprise Plus, Education Plus, and Education Standard customers can apply to enroll in the beta until January 20, 2023. Not available for personal Google accounts.
“Client-side encryption in Gmail ensures that sensitive data in email bodies and attachments cannot be deciphered by Google servers.” Said in the post. “Customers have control over and access to encryption keys and identity services.”
It’s important to know that the new protection Gmail offers is different from end-to-end encryption.
Client-side encryption, as the name suggests, is a method of protecting data at rest.That allow the organization Encrypt data in Google services with your own encryption key. Data is decrypted client-side using keys generated and managed by a cloud-hosted key management service.
A new Google feature requires admins to: Setting up an encryption key service Build your own service through or in place of one of the company’s partner services provided by Flowcrypt, Fortanix, Futurex, Stormshield, Thales, or Virtru. Client-side encryption APIs.
This means that your data is protected from unauthorized access, even from servers and service providers. However, an organization or administrator can control the keys and Monitor user encrypted files Or revoke a user’s access to a key, even if the key was generated by the user himself.
On the other hand, end-to-end encryption (E2EE) is a method of communication in which information is encrypted on the sender’s device and can only be decrypted on the recipient’s device using a key known only to the sender and recipient.
That said, the new option is currently limited to web browsers, but allows users to send and receive encrypted email inside and outside their domain. Encryption covers the email body and attachments (including inline images), but not the subject line and recipient list.
Gmail isn’t the only Google product with client-side encryption enabled. The tech giant enabled the same feature in Google Drive last year, Google Meet Early August of this year.similar test Google Calendar It ended on November 11, 2022.
Note that Android and iOS, as well as the Google Drive app for desktop, support client-side encryption. Google says the feature will be integrated into the Meet and Calendar mobile apps in a future release.
“Client-side encryption helps address a wide range of data sovereignty and compliance needs while helping to enforce data confidentiality,” the company added.