Google and the rest of the tech industry take security very seriously. As part of this year’s Safer Internet Day, Google is offering users 2GB of Drive storage if they perform a security check on their account. In another security minded update, Gmail will now flag emails sent to and received from non-encrypted sources.
While Gmail encrypts messages as they are sent using TLS and encrypts incoming and outgoing emails, other providers may not. If a recipient’s email provider does not support TLS encryption, users will see a red broken lock icon next to their name before sending a message. Practically speaking, Gmail hopes this will get users to think twice about what they are sending when they cannot confirm the person on the other end will be the only recipient.
If users receive an email from a provider that cannot be authenticated, a red question mark will replace the sender’s profile photo. This change is geared more towards emails that are received from sources that are masquerading as legitimate institutions.
These updates will start rolling out this week to web users of Gmail. It’s likely that these updates will eventually make their way to Gmail’s mobile apps, which are likely responsible for most of their billion active monthly users.