How Can Secure Messaging Help Your Business?

12th October 2015


What is it?

SMS's KeyEncrypt service is a secure messaging platform which allows businesses to send, receive and track confidential email and attachments on any device. It uses encryption to send secure emails, but comes with a whole host of other useful features. Predominantly, the service protects your business from risks associated with data breaches caused by human error, internal malice & external interception.

What does it do?

The KeyEncrypt secure messaging platform offers a host of useful features, each one of which we will go through in further detail later in this article:

  • Encryption
  • Email Recall
  • Email Tracking
  • Large File Transfer
  • Data Leak Prevention

Why is it important?

Data breaches are serious. The risk of damage to businesses is extremely high and can unfortunately signal the end for many SMEs. Once more, IBM have found that the costs of data breaches have risen by 23% over the last two years, with an average cost per record breached of £100. Not only are the immediate financial costs apparent, but the damage to reputation (and thus medium/long-term loss of business) can also be a huge factor to consider.

What are the main benefits?

  • Security - strong encryption keeps your business information safe from external threats, and protects against risk
  • Cost-Effective - huge cost savings compared to on-premise solutions (that cost on average £30k - £40k to set-up)
  • Simplicity - no added complexity and no interruption of user workflow. Easy for non-technical employees to use
  • Full Integration - with Office 365, Outlook, Gmail, OS X, and mobile (iOS, Android, Windows, Blackberry)
  • Compliance - meets the regulatory compliance & industry governance requirements in finance, insurance, legal, and healthcare


Being able to protect client information is becoming increasingly important, but traditionally, due to complex systems & expensive infrastructure, users have not considered encryption and companies have been hesitant to purchase it. In contrast, KeyEncrypt is simple for the end-user, and is cost-effective for the business. KeyEncrypt uses a cloud based email encryption method which ensures that messages are sent and delivered securely. The platform utilises HTTPS for data transmission, using 128bit SSL and 256bit AES at rest encryption. Once more, all data is stored in the UK.

If you send any sensitive information by email (and most companies do) then encryption is a necessity to avoid the risk of a data breach. Sending a normal email has been likened to sending a postcard. If someone really wants to, they can intercept your email and access the contents of the message. This isn't a problem with most emails, as they don't contain anything meaningful, but if you're sending sensitive personal information or billing information, then this becomes an inherent risk. Examples include credit card information, national insurance numbers, personal email addresses (on CVs for example), or any other pieces of data that could be used to identify an individual. Sending sensitive information like this by email can be very costly if it gets into the wrong hands.

As well as personal information, consider other documents that your business feels are sensitive. For example sales figures, strategy documents, training files, performance reviews, etc. Do you really want this information to potentially become public knowledge?

The risk management side of encryption is obvious, but does it have any other benefits? Well, you can even use encryption to show your customers that you really care about data privacy and security. Various email hacks have featured in the news predominantly in the last 2-3 years, and the public & business world is increasingly aware of the dangers more than ever. If you implement a secure messaging system, your customers will be impressed, and may recommend you to others as a result. Thus encryption can even be used to strengthen your brand image!

Recall Emails

A service that many people have wished they could have used at least one point in their professional and/or personal lives! The KeyEncrypt platform allows users to recall a message at any time, even when it has been delivered and read. Once more, users can put password protection on emails, so only the intended recipient can access the information.

This one is obvious! A full message recall feature helps eliminate the common risk of human error. There have been countless cases recently about this (Thomson, Dean Street Clinic, Bank Of England, St Andrews University). Human error is natural, and even the best of us can be prone, but using KeyEncrypt's full message recall, if you realise you have made an error, you can wipe the message completely. Even if this has been done too late and some of the readers have already read (although most errors are realised within 15 minutes), using the recall feature wipes the email and thus it can't be referred to later by the recipient, or forwarded to another account.

For example, 'David' is an Operations Director for a large UK based company (ABC Plc). David is preparing the annual sales strategy for the board meeting he has on Friday. He emails it to a member of his team to check over the figures, but instead emails it to an old colleague's personal email address by mistake, as they share the same name. The only problem is, the old colleague (Anne) now works for 123 Plc (a direct competitor) and Anne will have no problem using this information to her advantage. But, because David was using KeyEncrypt, he realised 3 minutes after he had closed his laptop that he might have sent it to the wrong person, checks again, and then instantly recalls the message. Anne doesn't receive the strategy document, and David sighs in relief!

Once more, with KeyEncrypt, users can password protect emails, allowing the sending of potentially sensitive information to inboxes that are manned by different users. For example, David (Director) wants to email Tom (a Sales Manager) his performance review. However, David knows that Emily (another Sales Manager) has been granted access to Tom's inbox incase Tom is off sick or on annual leave. Emily obviously doesn't go through Tom's emails on a regular basis (she's too busy!), but due to the sensitive nature of this particular document, David would rather ensure that this can't be read by anyone else apart from Tom, so he uses password protection on the email and gives Tom the password in an SMS message. Now, only Tom can read the email once the password is input.

Tracking Emails

Ever wanted to know whether someone has deleted your email without reading? With KeyEncrypt, you know when others have read, replied, forwarded, deleted, and printed an email. Plus, you can choose whether only you see the tracking information, or all recipients can see. Knowing what actions recipients have took helps employees make fast and more informed business decisions.

Let's say that Qwerty Solutions Ltd have a group project (they've been tasked with reinventing the keyboard). Sarah is the Team Leader and sends an email to all other group members (Paul, Wendy, and Richard) with instructions for the week. She sets the email so that all recipients can see the tracking status so everyone knows when the message has been read. When Paul received the message he was in a rush and accidentally deleted it without reading. Richard notices this a day after and gives Paul a ring to remind him to read the email.

Another example: Alex (the Training Manager for XYZ Ltd.) sends round a meeting agenda to the sales team. She requires it to be printed before the meeting, so everyone has a copy. However, Alex doesn't want every member of the sales team to see whether other people have printed the document, so sets KeyEncrypt so only the sender (Alex) can see who has printed the document. Also, Alex doesn't want a reply to this document (printing the agenda is non-negotiable!) so freezes replies as well.

Large File Transfer

If you want to securely and conveniently send large files over email, then KeyEncrypt is a great solution for you. It gives you the ability to quickly send files up to 5GB in size as an attachment, straight from email applications such as Outlook and Office 365. Once more, because the message is encrypted, you can rest assured that the attachment is safe and protected from prying eyes.

Because it's both easy and secure to send large files, there's many reasons why a business would benefit from this feature. For example, Peter works as a freelance graphic designer, and regularly uses FTP to transfer large image files to clients. However, he finds it labourious to visit the FTP website each time, and he'd prefer the client to just receive an email directly from him so communication between them is easier. With KeyEncrypt, he adds his large image attachments to an email and simply hits the send button. Once more, the client is impressed that Peter is sending encrypted messages to keep their communications secure, and recommends Peter's company to an old colleague in another company.

Or another example: Sandra is a solicitor working for Birchwoods LLP. She has a number of PDF documents that come to a total of 4.2GB. The nature of the documents are sensitive as they relate to a current case. She needs to send them as soon as possible, just before she leaves the office for a meeting, so time is of the essence. Sandra already has the KeyEncrypt plugin for Outlook installed, so simply attaches all her files and sends via secure email to her client. Quick and simple.

Data Leak Prevention

KeyEncrypt is ideal for both SMEs needing a simple deployment and larger companies that have comprehensive data loss prevention policies. The system scans content automatically based on group policies, looking for keywords, lexicons, and regex. Not only does it scan the content of the email, but also the subject and any attachments before automatically encrypting content.

Data breach scenarios can be critical for businesses. By utilising a secure messaging platform like KeyEncrypt, which automatically scans the email content for sensitive information, businesses can rest assured that this info isn't being leaked by accident or out of negligence.

For example, if Olivia (who has just started her new job) tries to send Jane (who works in HR) her bank account details via email, then KeyEncrypt would detect that this was sensitive information, and would not allow Olivia to send unencrypted.

Or Andrew (who works for XYZ Ltd.) sends an email to his shipping supplier (Freight Ltd.) with a list of names and addresses as an excel file. KeyEncrypt would detect this attachment as being against XYZ Ltd's data loss prevention policies and wouldn't allow the attachment to be sent via email in an unencrypted state.

You can see that by having this powerful, automatic protocol in place could help eliminate risk for even a small business, and thus help eliminate the costs associated with data breach.

How do I get it?

As you can see, secure messaging is critical to minimise risk in any size business, as data breaches can be critically expensive. Once more, the platform brings countless other benefits to businesses.

KeyEncrypt is £59.90 per annum (which works out at just £4.99 per month). Considering the costs & complexities of traditional encryption infrastructure, the potential costs of a data breach, and the many additional features KeyEncrypt offers; this is a cost-effective way to protect your business.

Simply Mail Solutions offer a 30 day free trial of KeyEncrypt if you want to see the platform in action before you buy.

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