Have you ever sent a private email to the incorrect person and wished you could take it back? Perhaps you intended to prohibit your receiver from downloading, forwarding, or copying the contents of your email but had no way of doing so.
All of these choices are now available to you thanks to Gmail’s confidential mode.
So, what precisely is Gmail’s secret mode? Why should you employ it? And how do you use Google’s mail service to send private emails?
Why Should You UseGmail’s Confidential Mode?
Gmail’s secret mode, which is available on both iOS and Android through the Gmail app, as well as its online version, is likely to suit today’s privacy-conscious email users.
Here are some compelling reasons why you should try it.
Send Secure Emails With a Passcode
Confidential mode takes email security to the next level by forcing your receivers to provide a password in order to access your emails.
In essence, you secure your email with a password that may be texted to the receiver and that they must enter in order to access the message.
Set an Expiration Date
The secret mode in Gmail is nothing short of a spy movie stunt, with self-destructive powers. The sender may choose an expiration date, and the email will expire automatically when that time arrives.
This function is not reliant on the kind of email you are sending and may be applied to a document, text, video, photo, or anything else. The expiry date may be set to one week, one month, three months, or five years.
Use a Mobile Number to Secure the Email Content
In the confidential mode, you may also utilize a cellphone number to safeguard your email content. You may provide a phone number, and the receiver will be sent a password to unlock the email.
There is no other method to access the email if you forget the cellphone number.
Stop Recipients From Forwarding or Downloading Emails
When emails are received in confidential mode, the ability to forward them is disabled by default. Unless the password is provided, recipients are not permitted to download any attachments.
It does not, however, prevent users from downloading your email attachments using malicious applications.
Prevent Email Content From Getting Copied
Your receivers cannot copy your emails when in confidential mode. It does not, however, prevent them from capturing screenshots or images of your email content or attachments.
Send Private Emails Across Different Email Providers
It makes no difference whether your connections use a different email service or platform. Gmail’s confidential mode allows you to send emails secretly to any provider or mailbox.
Related: How to Send an Encrypted Email for More Privacy
How to Send and Receive Emails in Confidential Mode
Have you used Gmail’s secret mode yet? You must now understand how to send and receive emails using this mode.
How to Send a Confidential Email in Gmail
Sign in to your Gmail account as usual, and then click the Composebutton in the top-left corner.
Write your email, add a recipient and a subject line, and then click the Confidential mode symbol at the bottom of your window, which looks like a padlock with a clock.
A new pop-up window will open, giving you the opportunity to specify an expiration date. Once you’ve chosen your time frame, you’ll be given the choice of requiring a passcode through SMS or not.
If you choose No SMS Passcode, it will be delivered to the same email address as the email itself.
The specified expiration date is shown at the bottom of the email. Before submitting your message, click Save. If you choose SMS passcode, you will be prompted to input the recipient’s phone number.
A word of caution:careful you don’t enter the wrong number!
How to Undo a Message You’ve Already Sent
Have you changed your mind after sending an email? Not to worry. The confidential mode makes it simple to withdraw access or “unsend” a communication.
Any private email sent will always display in both your inbox and the Sent folder. To “unsend” the message, first click on the secret email, then the message, and finally Remove access.
If your recipient has not yet read the email, they will be unable to access it.
How to Open an Email in Confidential Mode
You will open an email sent using Gmail’s confidential mode in the same way you would any other email. However, bear the following in mind:
- You can only see attachments or email content until they expire or the sender removes access.
- Do not be concerned if you are unable to copy, paste, download, or forward emails since they have been disabled by the confidential mode.
- If the receiver requires a password for access, you must input it before you can read the message or see any attachments.
If you get an error message while attempting to read an email, it is probable that the sender revoked access or destroyed the email before the expiry date. The only way around it is to contact the sender and request more time, or to resend the email.
IsGmail’s Confidential Mode Really Secure?
Email accounts, no matter how many privacy features they contain, will never be totally safe. This is particularly true for webmail services such as Gmail, Outlook, and Yahoo. Any emails sent out, even in confidential mode, are stored on Google’s servers and may therefore be read by Google if necessary.
Furthermore, the password option puts your receivers at danger since you must provide Google their private phone numbers. Another disadvantage is that Google’s secret mode does not provide end-to-end email encryption, which is essential for fully private communication.
If you wish to completely encrypt your emails, the good news is that there are several secure email companies, such as ProtonMail, that safeguard and encrypt your emails in the best manner possible. In the meanwhile, Google’s confidential mode is a good choice if you want something quick, free, and more private than many other email providers.
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