Gmail's game-changing privacy tool

Used by more than 1.4 billion people worldwide, Gmail is now the most used email provider. Within weeks, users of the Gmail service can expect significant changes to the system and increased options.

If Facebook is anything to go by, the big businesses who share and transport data, such as Google and the Gmail system, are on the watch list for users suspicious of who can access their so-called ‘confidential’ information and messages. Desire to qualm these fears may be behind Google’s new Confidential Mode feature on Gmail.

The new feature will allow senders to inhibit recipients from copying, printing or forwarding messages if they choose. These private messages can now be set on timers, after which they will ‘expire’ and vanish, or can be locked so that the recipient needs to use an access code sent to their phone to open them.

It’ll now be easier to write lists and quick notes, and the ‘offline mode’ means you can delete, archive and prepare messages to be sent without having any internet connection. You can also now ask Gmail to only alert you of the most important messages you receive. However, it’s Gmail that chooses which messages are classified as important, based on your activity…

Does this just make things easier for the ‘bad guys’ who have something to hide? And will this just make it harder for the everyday Australian to have transparency in the world around them, while it’s still (realistically) just as easy for large businesses to access our private information?

What do you think about the new system?

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Written by Liv Gardiner

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