How to Use Gmail’s Confidential Mode to Send Secure and Private Emails

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Do you want to send emails that are more secure and private? Do you want to have more control over who can access your messages and attachments? If so, you might be interested in Gmail’s confidential mode.

Confidential mode is a feature that lets you send messages and attachments with Gmail that help protect sensitive information from unauthorized access. You can use confidential mode to set an expiration date for messages or revoke access at any time. Recipients of the confidential message will have options to forward, copy, print, and download disabled.

Note: Although confidential mode helps prevent the recipients from accidentally sharing your email, it doesn’t prevent recipients from taking screenshots or photos of your messages or attachments. Recipients who have malicious programs on their computer may still be able to copy or download your messages or attachments.

How does confidential mode work?

When you send a message in confidential mode, Gmail replaces the message text and attachments with a link. The link opens in a secure portal that displays the content of the message. The portal also enforces the settings you chose for the message, such as the expiration date and the passcode.

If you choose “No SMS passcode,” recipients using the Gmail app will be able to open the link directly. Recipients who don’t use Gmail will get emailed a passcode to open the link.

If you choose “SMS passcode,” recipients will get a passcode by text message to open the link. Make sure you enter the recipient’s phone number, not your own.

You can also remove access to the message before the expiration date by clicking on “Remove access” in your sent folder.

How to send messages and attachments in confidential mode?

Sending messages and attachments in confidential mode is easy and quick. Just follow these steps:

  • On your computer, go to Gmail.
  • Click Compose.
  • In the bottom right of the window, click Turn on confidential mode.
  • Tip: If you’ve already turned on confidential mode for an email, go to the bottom of the email, then click Edit.
  • Set an expiration date and passcode. These settings impact both the message text and any attachments.
  • Click Save.

That’s it! You have successfully sent a message in confidential mode.

How to open an email sent with confidential mode?

If the sender used confidential mode to send the email:

  • You can view the message and attachments until the expiration date or until the sender removes access. 
  • Options to copy, paste, download, print, and forward the message text and attachments will be disabled. 
  • You might need to enter a passcode to open the email.

Confidential mode is a great way to enhance your email security and privacy. Try it out today and see how it works for you. If you’d like help setting confidential emails up or any other IT related questions schedule a consultation with Lancing Light today! We can find a hourly/monthly package that would suit your needs!


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