With the widespread reliance upon emails for quick communication between employees, internet security has become more important than ever. A malicious party gaining access to sensitive information contained within emails can spell disaster for a company, which is why encryption using a strong protocol is absolutely vital. OpenPGP is an encryption standard that is secure while remaining easy to seamlessly integrate with existing email clients.
How OpenPGP Encryption Works
OpenPGP is a form of asymmetrical encryption, which means that a different key is used to encrypt and decrypt a message. When someone wishes to communicate securely with another entity, he or she generates a key pair consisting of a private and public key. The private key must be kept secure at all times, but the public key can and shall be shared openly and freely. If another user wishes to communicate securely with the first party, he or she can encrypt a message using the provided public key. Only the secret private key is capable of decrypting messages encrypted using the public key, so the two parties can communicate without worry of confidential information being intercepted by unauthorized individuals.
Taking Advantage of OpenPGP
With Microsoft Outlook, email encryption can be accomplished through the use of the gpg4o plugin. Upon launching Outlook for the first time after gpg4o from Giegerich und Partner has been installed, the user is prompted to enter his or her email account information, after which a key pair is generated. He or she can then proceed to share the public key with other parties and communicate like usual. Gpg4o also allows its users to save passwords for a predetermined amount of time to keep passwords from having to be entered repeatedly.
The Dangers of Poor Security
It may be tempting to send cleartext emails containing sensitive information, but the consequences for doing so can be dire. Leaks of confidential customer data or important communications pertaining to internal finances are just some of the possible ramifications for not taking precautions to keep emails secure.
Internet security is going to become even more important as technology continues to change the business landscape, so it is imperative to ensure the protection of confidential data as soon as possible.