Why Email is Not a Good Solution for Secure File Transfer

The modern business world is not unlike the past, but with different challenges and barriers to overcome.  Prior to the advent of the digital world, communication and information exchange in the business realm took place via traditional communication methods: mostly telephone, postal delivery (mail), or courier services.  These methods were generally time consuming and inefficient for communicating with multiple associates on a daily basis and for conducting business; they don’t call is ‘snail mail’ for nothing, right?

Email seemed to be an ideal solution to these communication barriers.  Information could pass quickly and efficiently between multiple parties and at any time.  It was a solution that would not only be able to keep up with the fastening pace of business, but furthermore accelerate it.  Today, email is a primary communication method for conducting business – it is quick, it can be accessed at any time, and it can be sent to multiple parties, multiple times.

Email however is not without its short comings, especially as the digital era continues to progress.

Why Email is NOT Ideal for File Transfer

Many organizations are now turning to secure file transfer solutions as the demands of doing business continue to increase and email fails to accommodate these demands.  For instance, the electronic exchange of large files continues to be a barrier for email communications.  The explosion of rich, digital content – like video, audio, graphics, and PowerPoint presentations- has made sending large files a necessity; however email gateways are often configured to restrict attachment sizes, typically to 10 megabytes or the size of 60-second video clip for instance. Though the gateways can be reconfigured, to allow for larger attachments, email was not designed to handle extremely large files and their delivery often proves problematic.

Furthermore with many organizations beginning to archive their email communications, storing large attachments (and in some cases multiple copies of large attachments) can quickly fill up capped email storage limits; even only a few large file attachments may fill an entire email storage quota. Smaller attachments can become troublesome for organizations as well if they have been distributed to multiple employees and need to be archived.

To resolve this situation, some organizations have suggested that these files be archived on a secure server as a single file containing a link to the attachment, eliminating the need to archive multiple copies.  This solution addresses the excessive storage demands however if external or internal policies require that email be archived for any length of time, how will the link embedded in the email en lieu of the attachment resolve in a year or two or six?

The Solution

Simply, a secure file transfer solution is the best option for communicating large and important information across the web.  With added security measures to protect your information from cybercrime, most secure file transfer solutions are able to transfer and store large files easily and securely.  And while email does provide some practical application for small, daily communication and information exchange in business, email is simply not a good solution for secure file transfers.

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