Data protection startup Vera announced this week the launch of a new product designed to provide organizations full control over the messages and files sent out via email by their employees.
Vera’s platform aims to address the challenges associated with protecting data once it leaves an organization’s network. The company’s solutions allow companies to encrypt, track and maintain control of their data whether it’s shared directly or via cloud storage services such as Dropbox, Box and Google Drive.
The new product, Vera for Mail, extends the functionality to emails and the files attached to them. It provides seamless integration with popular email clients from Microsoft, Google and Apple, and it’s designed to have minimal workflow impact.
When users want to secure an email, they type it as they normally would and before sending it they use Vera for Mail, which introduces a drop-down list into the new email window, to select the desired policy. They can allow the recipient to make any modifications, prevent them from taking screenshots, track the email (i.e. who opens it, from where and for how long), allow just “view only” permissions, or dynamically watermark the email.
Recipients see the email as being sent via the Vera service and they are either provided a “View Email” button (if the email is opened in the browser) or a policy badge (if the message is opened in an email client) that tells them what they can and cannot do with the content. Users can view the emails without installing any application, but they are also given the option to download the Vera app for “an enhanced experience.”
Emails and attachments sent via Vera for Mail are encrypted and opened on the recipient’s system inside a secure container that prevents the user from taking screenshots, downloading the content, forwarding it, or modifying it – depending on the policy set by the sender. This also allows the sender to change the policies at any time or simply revoke access to the content. Furthermore, if a message or attachment can be forwarded or downloaded, the restrictions set via Vera remain in place.
Microsoft’s Outlook email client also provides recall functionality, but it only works for messages sent within the same organization and if the recipient has an Exchange account. On the other hand, Vera for Mail allows users to protect and recall emails without the recipient installing any software or having a specific configuration.
“By applying our data-centric security platform to email, not only are you protecting the confidentiality of your communications, you’re also getting better visibility into what information is leaving your organization,” explained Vera’s Grant Shirk. “And you’re doing so without interrupting the way people work. Track who’s accessing mail, from which devices, get notifications, change permissions, and revoke access at any time.”