Dave Farrington’s thoughts on what we need for email privacy and security are spot on. And unlikely to happen.
Apparently, privacy and security in email is a pipe dream, and it might have to do with how the whole process is structured. Compare email to, say, FaceTime, or Apple’s Messages app, both encrypted end-to-end. Once you’ve crafted and sent an email it remains as a Sent email file on your Mac. Most email services– Gmail, your local ISP, your company, or the server where your blog or website resides– also store Sent mail. Once you click send, the message gets sent but stored in at least two places, but once it arrives at the destination, the message is stored on another server; that belonging to or used by your recipient. And, assuming your recipient has an email app connected to the internet– that’s how email is handled in the 21st century– your message may stay on his or her server and on his or her Mac, Windows, PC, iPhone, Android phone, or whatever it is that collects and stores the messages.
What can Apple do to rescue email privacy and security? Not much. Not much because a solution requires everyone else to get on board. Microsoft, Google, Yahoo!, and email server providers, ISPs, those who manage IMAP and SMTP protocols, and probably others I don’t remember.
Microsoft and Apple could fix this for the vast majority of computer users with a simple encryption method that could be used by third party email app developers.