Google unveils Chrome e-mail scrambling software

Google stepped up its effort Wednesday to make it tougher for spies or anyone else to snoop on email, unveiling Chrome browser software for scrambling digital messages.

June 5, 2014
E-mail spam binary communication

Google stepped up its effort Wednesday to make it tougher for spies or anyone else to snoop on email, unveiling Chrome browser software for scrambling digital messages.

A test version of a software tool called “End-to-End” was released so Internet engineers can dabble with making mini-programs that plug into Chrome browser and encrypt Gmail messages in ways that shield them from eyes of everyone except senders and recipients.

“Emails that are encrypted as they’re routed from sender to receiver are liked sealed envelopes, and less vulnerable to snooping — whether by bad actors or through government surveillance — than postcards,” Gmail delivery team tech lead Brandon Long said in a blog post.

Along with releasing the encryption tool, Google added a section to its Transparency Report showing what portion of Gmail messages were sent wrapped in encryption and similar information for digital missives received from other email services.

The report showed on Thursday that over the past month 69 percent of outgoing Gmail messages were encrypted while only 48 percent of the email received from other services was scrambled in transit.

In a move that promised to pressure other services, Google broke down how much message traffic received from them was encrypted.

US Internet service titan Comcast, which got a dismal ranking in the report, quickly stepped up to say it is ramping up message encryption.

“Many providers have turned on encryption, and others have said they’re going to, which is great news,” Long said.

“As they do, more and more email will be shielded from snooping.”

The move by California-based Google comes as US Internet firms fend off privacy concerns provoked by US online spying tactics exposed by former intelligence agency contractor Edward Snowden, who has taken refuge in Russia.

More software news

iOS 8 boasts new features, better graphics

Apple reveals “Healthkit” app for mobile-health monitoring

OS X Yosemite new interface, features unveiled

Tags: Active, Chrome, e-mail, Google

Free Email Newsletter:
Subscribe

Shutterstock is the image partner of MyBroadband – technology images can be found here

Join the conversation

Connect with MyBB

twitterfacebookandroidappleblackberrynewsletterfeed

Poll

Will you make voice calls via WhatsApp when the service becomes available?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

More News

Surprising top smartphone stats in South Africa

Smartphones

If you think the Samsung Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5s are the most popular smartphones in South Africa, you are sorely mistaken

Self-driving cars need a permit

Google's Self-Driving Car prototype.

For the first time, California’s Department of Motor Vehicles knows how many self-driving cars are traveling public roads

DA welcomes SABC chair suspension recommendation

Democratic Alliance DA logo

The decision by Parliament’s communication portfolio committee to recommend the suspension of SABC board chairwoman Ellen Tshabalala on Tuesday was welcomed by the Democratic Alliance

Germany lifts ban on Uber

Uber

The controversial but popular car pick-up service Uber claimed a victory in Germany on Tuesday when a court threw out an injunction levelled against its operations in Europe’s biggest economy

Free MyBroadband Newsletter:
Subscribe
X
bool(true)