For Google it is time to encrypt all GMail connections

Pierluigi Paganini March 21, 2014

Google has announced to have adopted encrypt mechanisms for all Gmail connections to reply to the increasing demand of privacy of Internet users.

Google decided to encrypt all Gmail connections to reply to the increasing demand of privacy of Internet users, all the links between its data centers will be encrypted.

The surveillance programs disclosed by documents leaked by Edward Snowden have conditioned the business strategies of companies like Google and Microsoft.

NSA is able to spy on every technology on a large scale, for this reason the Google company has decided to make important improvements in its infrastructure to make it more difficult for governments and attackers to spy on users’ traffic.

The most significant improvement is the adoption of HTTPS protocol as the default choice for its Gmail service, Google has in fact decided to enforce SSL encryption on all Gmail connections.

gmail encryption connections

With this choice Google want to reinforce his image reiterating the non-involvement of NSA surveillance programs despite in these days agency general counsel Rajesh De confirmed that big tech companies like Yahoo and Google provided ‘full assistance’ in the legally mandated collection of data. Google also made another important technical improvement, it has encrypted all of the links between its data centers.

It will be really hard to spy on Gmail messages, that thanks to the modification made by Google will be encrypted during all their lifetimes since they leave users’ computers.

“Starting today, Gmail will always use an encrypted HTTPS connection when you check or send email. Gmail has supported HTTPS since the day it launched, and in 2010 we made HTTPS the default. Today’s change means that no one can listen in on your messages as they go back and forth between you and Gmail’s servers—no matter if you’re using public WiFi or logging in from your computer, phone or tablet,” “In addition, every single email message you send or receive—100 percent of them—is encrypted while moving internally. This ensures that your messages are safe not only when they move between you and Gmail’s servers, but also as they move between Google’s data centers—something we made a top priority after last summer’s revelations.” has written in a blog post Nicolas Lidzborski, Gmail Security Engineering Lead. 

As stated by Lidzborski Gmail users have had the possibility to choose HTTPS only as the default connection in the last four years, but evidently it was enough because the majority of users ignored it. Now users’ connections to Gmail will always be encrypted by default.

Pierluigi Paganini

(Security Affairs –  Encryption, GMail)

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