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I just read that everyone in the world can ready my mails (if intercepted in traffic by eavesdropping?). Also, it reads that current versions (book's from 2004 so I assume that new versions adopt encryption policies) of Outlook and Eudora have built-in crypto. Is it sufficient or should I use PGP on every mail I send? How about my favorite gmail? Does it include end-to-end encryption? If so, is it sufficient?

Sorry for being a newbie.

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Gmail does not include native encryption features that can be used via webmail. Broadly speaking, webmail services that provide encryption are doomed to failure, and this for a very simple reason: the only encryption that you can trust is end-to-end i.e. from your machine to your correspondent's machine.

You can achieve this by installing a plugin for email encryption on your mailclient. The most used standard is probably OpenPGP, which is implemented on the open source and free software GnuPG (cross-platform) or GPG4Win (for Windows). However, your correspondent must do the same. Note that in this way you can encrypt/decrypt messages no matter the email service you use, provided that it gives you access to email via POP or IMAP and not only webmail.

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You can indeed use an end to end cryptographic encryption tool with Gmail. But be warned that it is still in test stage so there is a chance it is still buggy. Or you could always wait for the next version (which I think will be 4 to 6 months ahead) by which point it will be released as a stable extension (hopefully!)

Another caveat is that it is a Chrome only extension so you'd have to use Chrome to access gmail.

Finally, it doesn't come with mobile support yet.

See here:

https://github.com/google/end-to-end/wiki

http://googleonlinesecurity.blogspot.in/2014/12/an-update-to-end-to-end.html

http://googleonlinesecurity.blogspot.in/2014/06/making-end-to-end-encryption-easier-to.html

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While You can setup encrypted emailing this is not on by default. It is not trivial to do so and requires action from both sender and receiver

Email is essentially a clear text protocol and since you do not host it yourself you have no clue about how it's transmitted between sender / receiver. It's better to assume that whatever you write as an email can be read by everyone than try protecting against it since the protection (encryption) requires non-trivial setups. Either through SSL certificates or through a PKI system (like pgp).

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protonmail looks promising https://protonmail.ch/ but (a word of caution) done by smart people who are not cryptographers by trade or training.

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