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Volume of encrypted email rising amid spying fears

10 months ago June 03, 2014 Jun 3, 2014 Tuesday, June 03 2014 Tuesday, June 03, 2014 1:14:11 PM EDT in News
Source: Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO - The volume of email cloaked in encryption technology is rapidly rising as Google, Yahoo, Facebook and other major Internet companies try to shield their users' online communications from government spies and other snoops.

Google automatically encrypts all email, but that doesn't ensure confidentiality unless the recipients' email provider also adopts the technology. In a report Tuesday, Google says 65 percent of the messages sent by its Gmail users are now encrypted while it's being delivered, meaning the recipient's email provider also supports the technology. That's up from 39 percent in December.

Incoming communiques to Gmail are less secure, with only 50 percent of them encrypted while in transit. That's still better than the 27 percent of incoming Gmail messages that were encrypted in December, by Google's calculations.

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