The New York Times article Whoever Wins the White House, This Year’s Big Loser Is Email dives into issues with email as a means of communication around sensitive issues. The WikiLeaks release of Hillary Clinton’s emails shows the casual use of email as both a way to reach out and also as a way to summarize and leave a trail. This was demonstrated in a series of emails around the question of whether to allow foreign governments to donate to the Clinton campaign.
We’ve all been inured to the idea that email is quick and easy, with the advantage of being able to easily search for past discussions. It’s almost as good as keeping a journal of events and decisions. Email is used to collaborate with people who can be worlds away, or even sitting next to you. The concept that it’s efficient, however, is questionable; instead of waiting for each person to chime in on a string of emails serially, a conference call, for example, could solicit real time feedback, and hopefully draw a conclusion more quickly than a drawn-out email discussion. It’s also a lot more secure.
Conference calls, however, in today’s global economy, are not often practical or convenient. And while email is in many instances the most convenient, simple, and effective way to communicate, for matters of state and other sensitive issues, it could be disastrous. Here’s a simple test: if an email would embarrass you or reveal something you wouldn’t want public, don’t use email. Otherwise, go for it. For those sensitive emails where you do have a need to communicate but security is required, Biscom Secure File Transfer offers both a secure collaborative workspace as well as secure messaging – so you can rest easy having the most confidential discussions among your group.