How To Safely Send Passwords Over Email?

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Published on: , Last Updated on April 13, 2024

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How To Safely Send Passwords Over Email

These days, a lot of people work exclusively on their computers, whether it be in an office or remotely. This means that their device is also their main form of communication and their sole access point to the long list of sites and applications that are vital to their jobs.

But even though our computers are indeed smart and allow us to work faster and more efficiently, they also pose quite a risk: Studies have shown that up to 70 % of employees share their passwords with others, which can easily be done through email.

This puts your business at risk of having this sensitive information shared with individuals with malicious intents, resulting in data leaks, viruses on company devices, hacks and the likes – which are all obviously very damaging to any business.

So, the question is: Can it ever be safe to send passwords over email? And if yes, how can it be done?

Be Cautious About Sharing Passwords and Monitor Activity

We live in a world where a lot of our communication is done through email. In fact, in 2020, approximately 306 billion emails were sent and received every day worldwide, which speaks for itself.

Therefore, plenty of people have, at some point in time, probably shared personal information such as a password through email. As mentioned above, this can be quite dangerous, especially if it isn’t done with caution. However, securely sharing passwords can be done without potentially damaging your business. But how, you may ask?

1. be cautious about whom you share your password with

One of the many ways is to, first and foremost, be cautious about whom you share your password with. If, for instance, it’s a new coworker you don’t know very well, perhaps you shouldn’t share such important information.

2. Only Send The Password In One-On-One Correspondences

If you must share it with them, refrain from sending it to several people on private accounts, e.g. like on a group FaceTime call. Only send passwords in one-on-one correspondences to work emails and devices, so that they don’t have access to company accounts and data from home (and can thus remain logged in, even after the end of their employment). 

Furthermore, you should always, no matter who you share your password with, monitor the activity of your accounts. This way, if you share your password with someone who turns out to not be trustworthy, you’ll quickly realize it and be able to lock them out before any real damage can be done.

3. Use Multi-Factor Authentication 

Since cyberattacks are the number one threat to the global financial system according to many experts, businesses are understandably becoming more and more nervous about the risk of leaks. Due to this, using multi-factor authentication, also known as MFA, has become much more common in recent years.

This method adds another layer of protection to your business if you choose to share your password with someone else – by making the user go through additional stages of verification, e.g. like typing in a password sent to them over text message. This code will only work that one time, and the user will not be able to use the password again afterwards.

4. Use temporary accounts

Another useful method is to create temporary accounts. By doing this, you can reset the passwords afterwards, and the account will not be able to be accessed again using the old password – or delete the account entirely.

Also, with a temporary account, you can usually choose how much the person with the password is able to access and edit. Just make sure that the access is limited and not all personal information is displayed. Then you can safely share your password over email. However, with that being said: There’s nothing wrong with being cautious.

How to send passwords safely?

  • If possible try to share the passwords verbally. You can do it either in person or on a call.
  • You can also use open source services like enigmail, or you can choose any other service like enigmail to encrypting your email. Sending an email over an encrypted email best way to securely share your data.
  • You can also use the Gmail’s Confidential Mode and to use that, click the Compose button, find the padlock and clock symbol option to set an expiry date and choose whether or not to send an SMS code. After typing the message click Send. The recipient can still take a screenshot, but Confidential Mode is still more secure than regular plain-text emails for sending passwords.

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Rahul Choudhary is a technology and troubleshooting expert. He gives his expert opinion on different technology trends and provides troubleshooting guides for different apps, websites, & consumer hardware products. He graduated in BA English Honours from the University Of Delhi, and later he learned HTML and WordPress. He also did a certificate course in Hardware and Network Troubleshooting , and a certificate course in Computer Architecture.