Gmail Continues to Roll Out Client-Side Encryption


The encryption, which makes mails and files unreadable before they reach Google’s servers, is now available in more versions.


Gmail client-side encryption (CSE) adds encryption to a message from the user’s device. In this way, sensitive data in the body of the text and added documents are already made unreadable before it reaches Google’s servers. The feature already existed on the browser version of Gmail, which has been running in beta since December last year.

A version for Google’s various office programs, including Drive, Docs, Sheets and more, has also been in testing for several months.

The feature is now rolling out more widely, specifically to Google Workspace Enterprise Plus, Education Plus, and Education Standard. By default, the feature is currently off, but clients of those suites can turn their encryption on with the help of a third-party encryption service. More installation information can be found in the documentation of the feature.

Incidentally, this is not about ‘end-to-end’ encryption, as you will find with several messaging services. CSE is mainly intended for larger companies and offers the administrators of those companies many particular options, including who can apply the encryption. It encrypts the text and attached documents but not the subject of an email, so some caution is advised.

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