Recent bad press about the potential for third-parties to access people’s Gmail communications has prompted Google to release a statement about the security and privacy measures on their flagship email platform.
What Google doesn’t do
Google has long denied crawling emails for profiling and ad targeting data.
Also, Google doesn’t grant third parties access to your data without your permission. Users may deny requested permissions when installing any non-Google application.
Blocking bad apps
Third-party apps can add functionality to the core Gmail experience. But the connection between other apps and Gmail can be exploited to breach security.
Google says developers must accurately represent themselves and any reasons for data collection. Data that does not help an app complete its stated function may not be collected. If a developer breaches the policies that define these rules, their apps will be suspended from the Play Store.
It’s not clear, however, how often Google does this or how effectively their policies are policed.
G Suite admin tools
For enterprise users, blocking all non-Google apps is an option, but it’s not the only way to stay safe. G Suite admins can audit and whitelist trusted app extensions to facilitate added functionality without ceding security.
Would security concerns make you think twice before sending sensitive communications via Gmail?
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