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How to Send Secure Emails in Gmail (with Photos)

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How to Send Secure Emails in Gmail (with Photos)

Email is one of the earliest forms of communication on the internet. You certainly have at least an email address if you’re reading this. Critics decry the eventual fall of email, especially considering that one of the biggest issues with emailing is that it isn’t very secure and private.

By default, Gmail doesn’t provide you with means to encrypt attachments or messages. This leaves you susceptible to snoops, thieves, and hackers.

How can you boost the security of your email communications through Gmail, you ask? Let’s break down the simple steps to secure your Gmail emails.

Why Send Secure Emails?

A secure email ensures that your online communications are confidential and cannot leak to outside parties. Some occupations are also very sensitive and would require a secure channel to send information.

A secure email is one only the sender and the recipients can access. This email is encrypted better than regular emails as the receiver will require a key from Google to open the email. The email can also expire from the receiver’s inbox and disappear. Receivers are blocked from copying, downloading, printing, or forwarding the contents of the email, adding an extra layer of protection to the email.

Fortunately, encrypting email is quite a simple process. Let’s dive into a few methods of sending secure emails on your computer and phone.  

Sending a Secure Email in Gmail with Your PC

Follow the below steps to send a secure email.

Step 1: Go to Gmail.com

Open your preferred browser and log in to your Gmail account.

Step 1: Go to Gmail.com
Open Gmail.

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Step 2: Select Compose Email

The Compose button is on the top lefthand corner of your Gmail home screen. Click on it. It will open a new message box where you can compose the email you want to send and add any attachments.

Step 2: Select Compose Email
Click Compose.

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Step 3: Click on the Confidential Mode icon

There are several icons on the new message box on the lower part. Look for the one that looks like a padlock, and if you hover the pointer on it, it will show you that it’s the Toggle confidential mode. Click on it

Step 3: Click on the Confidential Mode icon
Find the padlock icon and click on it.

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Step 4: Choose a preferred expiration date and passcode

On the menu that pops up from step 3, choose the expiration date for this email. This determines the period the email will stay in the receiver’s inbox before it disappears.

You can also choose the SMS passcode option if you wish to. The passcode will be generated by google and only shared with the expected recipient.

Once you have set these parameters, click on Save.

Step 4: Choose a preferred expiration date and passcode
Select the expiration time and whether you want a passcode used.

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Step 5: Select Send email

A new box opens up below the email showing the expiration date and the encryption given to the email. You can also edit these parameters from here.

Once you are satisfied with the email, you can send it.

Step 5: Select Send email
Click Send to send your email.

©History-Computer.com

In the following video, KnowledgeBase demonstrates how you can send an encrypted Gmail email in under a minute.

Sending a Secure Email in Gmail on Your Phone   

Smartphones are a good option for sending emails while on the go. Confidential mode is also accessible through the following steps to the Gmail phone app.

Step 1: Go to the Gmail app on your iPhone or Android device.

Step 1: Go to the Gmail app on your iPhone or Android device.
Open Gmail on your phone.

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Step 2: Tap on the Compose icon

You can type out your email here and add your attachments and links.

Step 2: Tap on the Compose icon
Click Compose.

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Step 3: Tap on the three-dot menu

The three-dot menu is located at the top righthand corner of your screen, and clicking on it will open a box.

Step 3: Tap on the three-dot menu
Click the three-dot menu in the top righthand corner.

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Step 4: Tap on Confidential Mode

Step 4: Tap on Confidential Mode
Click on Confidential mode.

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Step 5:  Set the expiration date and choose if it requires a passcode

Tap the drop-down arrow on the Set Expiry to choose the expiration period. The drop-down arrow on Require Passcode will also let you choose between Standard and SMS Passcode.

Once you set the parameters, click on Save.

Step 5:  Set the expiration date and choose if it requires a passcode
Set the expiration date and whether you want to give it a passcode.

©History-Computer.com

Step 6: Send your email

A message showing the confidential mode settings will appear below your email. Once you are satisfied with the email, tap on Send.

Step 6: Send your email
Click on Send (the arrow icon) to send the email.

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What the Email Recipient Sees

When you send a secure email, the recipient does not see a preview of the email. It shows that the email was sent in Confidential Mode, and they will have to open it to see its contents.

When you open the email, it has a message box at the bottom showing the expiry date of the email.

What the Email Recipient Sees
The recipient sees that the email was sent in Confidential Mode.

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Removing Access From an Already Sent Secure Email

If you decide the recipient shouldn’t receive the email anymore, you can revoke their access. You will need to navigate to the sent emails, find them and remove access. On the sent email, click on the Remove Access icon.

Removing Access From an Already Sent Secure Email
If you want to remove a recipient’s access, click Remove access.

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Keep Online Communication Safe with Email Encryption

Protecting your identity, data, and privacy is undeniably important. Taking the time to learn these steps is great for protecting your emails from unwanted intruders. Use the best practices and instructions provided to send secure emails. 

How to Send Secure Emails in Gmail (with Photos) FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What is secure email in Gmail?

It is a confidential mode in Gmail that allows one to send sensitive emails protected from unauthorized access. One will need a passcode to open it, and the email has a specific expiry date.

Why should I send a secure email?

Some content sent through email is confidential and should only be shared with the concerned parties.  The last thing you’d want is the email leaking to an outside party. A secure email ensures that the email is only read by the intended. It also ensures that it is not shareable with others through forwarding, printing, or downloading.

What are the pros of sending secure emails on Gmail?

The method is easy, with only a few steps to follow. It is accessible to anyone without the need for payments or subscriptions.

What are the cons of this type of secure email?

The confidential email service from Gmail is less secure if you do not add the option of SMS Passcode verification. The messages are also not end-to-end encrypted. One may also screenshot the email and send the contents to another person.  You can check out other secure email providers offering more comprehensive encryption for better security.

Are there more advanced Methods to secure your Gmail Emails?

Premium Google workspace accounts enjoy a S/MIME email extension that further encrypts all incoming and outgoing emails.

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