) has enhanced Gmail security in an attempt to keep its user
emails nearly safe from the hands of the National Security Agency
(NSA). Google announced that encryption technology has been
improved to prevent the NSA from spying on messages travelling
between inboxes and its global data centers.
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To boost the security system, Google will employ a protected
communications protocol called HTTP Secure or HTTPS to connect to
its servers. This will encrypt data moving between the inboxes
and the servers. HTTPS will replace HTTP in the URL to provide
better protection. Previously, users were allowed to choose
between HTTP and HTTPS but from now on HTTPS will be the only
option available while connecting to Gmail.
Ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden had leaked information about the
NSA's global Internet surveillance program PRISM, under which the
agency collects user data of Internet companies like Google,
) and Microsoft. As part of this operation, they can keep online
activities under surveillance to determine any threat to national
The NSA has to get permission for data-mining under Section 702
and then these companies conform to it by providing access to
data keeping the personal details of the customers safe.
However, Internet companies have alleged that the NSA sometimes
collects data without their consent. The agency defends itself by
claiming that it collects only suspicious information.
Even U.S. residents have opposed the NSA's surveillance program
as they believe that their personal as well as financial
information can easily be accessed by NSA officials.
As technology companies bank on Internet usage to gain profits,
they are anxious that the NSA's spying activities will hamper
their prospects. Therefore, it is necessary that they take
adequate steps to prevent tapping of user data and offer more
secure connections. Google is in fact one of the first companies
to take action by improving security for Gmail users.
Google currently holds a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).