Google has become the latest company to roll out an encryption update, revealing that the Gmail email service is configured to support end-to-end encryption (E2EE), but not all users will be able to get it.

In an update to the Google Workspace blog (opens in a new tab), the company explained that it plans to implement client-side encryption (CSE) in Gmail, as it has already done for Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Presentations, and Meet. . Google Calendar is also testing the feature in beta.

This follows an announcement that Apple plans to roll out similar "advanced data protection" for US iCloud users by the end of 2023, and globally over the next year, though it's not set to cover Mail, Contacts, or calendar.

gmail encryption

Google's client-side encryption help article (opens in a new tab) details that "the tech giant's servers can't access your encryption keys and decrypt your data."

Using CSE in Gmail will make sensitive data, including email attachments, "indecipherable by Google's servers," but as with any CSE, users should enter their encryption keys and consider using a different one. third-party security key for backup.

Using client-side encryption in Gmail ensures that sensitive data in the email body and attachments is indecipherable by Google's servers. Clients retain control of the encryption keys and the identity service to access those keys.

A beta program (opens in a new tab) is available to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus and Education Standard/Plus account holders. It will stay open until "January 20, 2022," according to the post, but we think it should be January 20, 2023 and we've reached out to Google to confirm.

Among the long list of ineligible accounts are: Workspace Essentials, Business Starter/Standard/Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Education Fundamentals, Frontline, Nonprofits, Legacy G Suite Basic/Business, and personal accounts.

With all of that, it's likely to be some time before these added security measures start to trickle down to other account types.

Successful beta candidates will need to wait for confirmation from Google before they can follow the setup steps - opens in a new tab.

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