Email encryption has become an important asset for businesses in a world where cybersecurity is a necessity. Although it doesn't seem like the most fancy or complex protection tool, it can be an amazing resource for email security, and may have been able to prevent the Sony Entertainment cyberattacks if the organization had utilized it.

Encryption is used as a protective measure for many mechanisms in the corporate world, and SearchSecurity reported that any kind of organization can take advantage of email encryption software.

But what exactly can encryption do and how should businesses find a secure email provider?

Understanding encryption
According to Slate, encryption is a necessary part of the tools and protocols we use today, whether these be electronic payments or digital communication. The source highlighted how encryption has even become a part of Apple and Google smartphones.

The term "encryption" refers to a layer within any program to jumble data that will be transferred from one place to another. The source noted that the process relies on mathematical algorithms to protect stored data. A combination of the contents of the message and the "key" or password keep the encrypted information safe.

Unfortunately, according to the Pew Research Center, less than 20 percent of Internet users actively use encryption. For the remaining 80 percent, using email to send sensitive information - addresses, payment data or anything that could be incriminating if someone found out about it. - can be a huge risk.

Businesses should be using email encryption software to protect themselves from any intruders. Cyberattacks are no longer just a possibility - they are practically inevitable for all organizations.

Knowing the necessary features
SearchSecurity reviewed the characteristics of encryption software that companies need to keep in mind when researching this potential investment. Features vary depending on the program, and corporations must look for tools that will benefit them the most.

Support for internal and external users is one crucial feature that companies need to consider. According to the source, they can either choose to implement encryption for internal email users alone - meaning those within the company - or extend these protections to end users, those who will be receiving email on the other side.

Usability is another feature that the source insisted was important to consider. Sometimes programs are just too difficult for employees to use or understand, or it may take too much training to get them up to speed.

Protecting email
Organizations can't just worry about protecting their own employees and data - they have to also keep in mind the information and interactions between themselves and other companies. To ensure that communication is safe, they can exchange keys with trusted outside entities before sending messages.

Encryption needs to be updated as it evolves, just as people should change their personal passwords every few months. Although this method can be confusing for some employees, using secure email providers as a guide may help businesses realize what might be the best way to implement the encryption system.

Other ways of ensuring protection for email users include giving them information on how to use security precautions themselves. This can be as simple as reminding them not to open emails from unfamiliar users and to keep passwords complex and updated.

There are many ways to ensure email security. If a company is researching how to improve its cybersecurity program, it may benefit from contacting a secure email provider. A complex cybersecurity plan is necessary for all enterprises, as no information is safe from being compromised in a breach.