“Secure email” is a misnomer, but it is still important to make sure that your emails are being sent in a not-terrible way. How do you do that? Well, I’ve just discovered an awesome website to help. https://starttls.info/ will verify that your email provider is setup to receive email in the industry standard, secure way called STARTTLS.
STARTTLS is a way for two email companies to send each other mail using encryption so that other people can’t read it before it gets to where it’s going. Sending an email from or to an email that doesn’t support STARTTLS is like CC’ing the NSA, FSB (aka. KGB), MSS, and other intelligence agencies on your email, as we’ve learned.
Unfortunately, just a fraction of the email providers support security. 38% to be precise, according to the statistics at starttls.info/stats. Now because it takes two people to have a conversation, this means that only 14% of email conversations are going to be secure. In other words, your email only has a 1 in 7 chance of being secure unless you take action.
[caption id=“” align=“aligncenter” width=“660”] STARTTLS Statistics from starttls.info/stats[/caption]
You need to do two things:
Make sure YOU have a secure email provider. Verify yours at https://starttls.info/.
Make sure your FRIENDS have a secure email provider. Verify their email addresses at https://starttls.info/. Then encourage them to get a decent email address and remember to only send sensitive emails to addresses that pass the test.