Gmail and Google Calendar are becoming more secure, but not for everyone

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Gmail and Google Calendar are the next Google services to take advantage of client-side encryption. An option reserved only for Workspace customers, that is, organizations and professionals. This type of encryption offers more security, since not even Google has access to user data.

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Last year, Google enabled client-side encryption for Drive, Docs, Slides, Sheets, and Meet. Added to this list of services are Gmail and Calendar: a feature reserved for Workspace customers.

Gmail and Google Calendar bet on encryption

are the means 9to5Google reporting the news: Client-side encryption is available to all Workspace users in Gmail and Google Calendar. Users of the service (mainly businesses and schools) can control their encryption keys and manage who can access them. What is called the “client side encryption“, is a cryptographic technique that encrypts a user’s data before it is transmitted to a server (here, Google’s). They can only be decrypted by the sender or receiver of said data, using a secret key.

Client-side encryption in Gmail // Source: 9to5Google

Sent emails, events added to the calendar, attached files, etc. all this data is encrypted before being sent to Google’s servers. This also works for an email with a recipient outside of your organization. Until now, Workspace services already encrypted “I do not transit”, and Google says to take it to another level with this “client side encryption».

Client-side encryption in Google Calendar // Source: 9to5Google

For example, in Gmail, a lock icon can be found next to the recipient field when sending an email. An option now allows you to activate the “additional encryption“. In Google Calendar, this is embodied by a shield icon so that the “Description, attachments, and video meetings through Google Meet have additional encryption.»

Why Google is expanding data encryption

In its announcements blog post, Google states that “Extending client-side encryption capabilities in Google Workspace helps significantly reduce the compliance burden for businesses and public sector organizations.The company is also based on the fact that no one can access the data of its clients: neither she nor the “foreign governments“. It is the users who have control of the keys and therefore of the data they produce.

Therefore, this type of encryption is available to Workspace Enterprise Plus, Education Standard, and Education Plus customers. Also a way for Google to ensure the confidentiality of data when using its services, the brand may suffer a bad reputation at this point.

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