en_US / Resources / Articles

How Secure is Your Email Account?

You use email for many tasks. But can you say with absolute certainty that you have a secure email account? Most people don’t think about email security, assuming it’s protected from internal and external security threats like hackers. However, as recent events have shown, that isn’t necessarily the case.

How can I make my email more secure?

Plenty of free email providers have account security and privacy settings that can be enhanced with a few simple changes. Also, many email clients offer secure, encrypted systems.

Top five tips for a secure email account

Use HTTPS — Some email providers let you change their settings to “always log in” and use their emails over an encrypted HTTPS connection.

    ○ Unsure if your encryption setting is currently on? Check the address bar of your Web browser to see if you have https:// instead of http://.

    ○ Manually change your email security settings to always use HTTPS to ensure that option is always on as well.

    ○ Not all email providers encrypt their entire email system. Some only encrypt your login information (e.g., username, password), which means your actual messages aren’t protected.

Avoid the obvious — With all the information we share on social media, you probably don’t want to pick a security question as easily searchable as your first school or favorite pet.

Don’t talk to strangers — We’re told from a young age not to talk to strangers, and the same should be applied regarding suspicious emails, attachments and links. While this method of introducing malware, viruses and other forms of hacking has been around for a while, it’s still a viable security threat that you should take all necessary precautions against.

Choose reliable verification — Some email providers offer multi-step verification systems that can send SMS alerts to your mobile phone or emails to an alternative secure email address.

Avoid public Wi-Fi — Using public Wi-Fi is convenient ― especially for those of us who desire 24/7 connectivity ― but you put yourself at risk. Don’t access your email, credit card information or anything else requiring you to log in while you’re on its network.

Is that secure enough?

Although an email provider’s security settings can be changed to the highest level of protection, it doesn’t necessarily protect you from phishing programs and other malware that might infect your computer. Those security threats can compromise your email through your computer, so it’s important to “run your anti-virus program regularly and keep your operating system and Web browser updated with the latest security enhancements.”

Overall, email gets the basic job done, but when sending confidential or sensitive information, it’s not necessarily the safest method. Ask yourself if it’s worth the risk. For us, it’s an unequivocal no.

That’s why Citrix ShareFile designed a variety of highly secure cloud solutions to fill that need for a fully encrypted method of data protection, whether it’s being transferred or at rest in our servers.

Don’t just take our word for it. Contact us for a free trial today, and experience our file-sharing solutions firsthand.

Ready to try ShareFile? It's free for 30 days. No credit card required.

Related Information