Data Sharing is an important aspect of business, yet safeguarding it and following compliances is very critical as well. Virtru helps individuals or businesses with end to end encryption of their emails and files in compliance with various privacy laws.
Data is a valuable asset in today’s world and Virtru helps its user manage the risk of data leaks by helping to share data with the intended recipients only. The controls applied to secure the data is persistent as well. Let’s have a look at what is virtru, its various features, cost and usage, and if you should use virtru.
What is Virtru?
Often, we are required to share sensitive information with other recipients. Emails and file sharing are the commonly used techniques when it comes to electronic data sharing. However, once the data has left your control, it becomes difficult to manage the privacy of it.
With the rising usage of cloud storage, ensuring the security of such data stores as well as compliance with data privacy laws is of much importance.
Virtru is a tool that helps users encrypt the data including emails end-to-end with encryption keys owned by the user.
What features or products does Virtru offer?
Virtru products include various range of data protection tools that help with encryption, access control, audits, key management, etc.
The well-known products offered by Virtru are:
- Gmail Encryption: With the help of Virtru one can encrypt Gmail emails including attachments and deploy access control directly using the Native Gmail Web Client.
- Microsoft Outlook Email Encryption: Virtru also supports encryption of emails and attachments shared using Microsoft Outlook. The access controls are integrated directly in Microsoft Office 365 or Exchange servers.
- Google Drive Encryption: If you are looking to encrypt the contents stored in Google Drive as well as maintain access control, Virtru can help.
- Supports Enterprise Applications: Encrypting and protecting emails, attachments produced by custom applications or cloud-based SaaS apps to your customers, external contractors, third-party or patients etc is possible with the help of Virtru.
- Virtru Data Protection Platform: Developers can also extend and use the Virtru Data Protection Platform with the help of Virtru SDK and integrate security and privacy for data types consumed by custom applications.
How much does Virtru cost : Virtru Pricing
Virtru offers FREE Gmail and Outlook encryption for individual customers. If you are looking to protect your personal email and attachments using encryption for Gmail or Outlook, you can get started by downloading Virtru now.
Virtru’s free Gmail and GSuite support is supported on the native web app on Google Chrome as well as Outlook. Virtru also offers iOS and Android apps to send encrypted emails from your smartphones or to access Virtru emails sent to you.
When it comes to Virtru’s Business Pricing, one needs to contact the sales team at Virtru for a demo and quote. Per some research, it looks like the price ranges from 50 to 60 US$ per user for businesses at the time of composing this article.
What are Virtru’s functionalities?
Virtru’s service provides various functionalities other than end-to-end encryption that can be used to further fine-tune the security. These include the below.
- Access Monitor: You can monitor the access to the messages you have sent.
- Access Control: The access to your data can be controlled and restricted to the users you seem deemed fit.
- Message forward permissions: Controls to manage the rights for recipients of your messages to further forward them can be controlled.
- Watermarks: Watermarks can be added to suitable data.
- Expiration dates: You can set up the access of data to expire after certain use or period.
- Alerts: Virtru can also alert you when certain types of data are accessed. Alerts can be further customized by domains and keywords as well.
Virtru’s approach towards safety.
Virtru offers free access to Gmail and Outlook email encryptions to individual users. On the other hand, Business users can engage Virtru to get these security features.
With Business Plans, the Business administrators can manage the encryption keys and host them at their end. For individual users, Virtru takes care of the encryption keys.
However, even for individual users- this does not necessarily mean Virtru has access to your data.
According to Virtru, the below approaches make it more secure.
- No new accounts are needed by end-users: The recipients of your messages or data do not have to create new accounts and remember new credentials.
- No Manual exchange of keys: Users will not have to exchange keys via other unsafe methods as compared to other manual solutions. Virtru Business users can host their keys or also get Virtru to host the keys as offered to individual customers.
- No installation of software or use of external portals: Virtru can easily integrate with existing email clients like Gmail and Outlook.
- No Forced Vendor Trust or Blind Subpoena Risk: Virtru stores the data and keys separately thus reducing the risk of blind government subpoenas or forcing the vendor trust as compared to other vendors.
How to use Virtru? : Gmail or GSuite example
Virtru’s Gmail integration works seamlessly on the Gmail Web Client on a Chrome browser. Virtru is also Google recommended provider of email and file encryption in GSuite. Let’s have a look at how to use Virtru on Gmail.
To get started, open the Chrome Webstore in a Chrome browser and look for Virtru Email Protection. Once you have installed the plugin, you can now proceed to open your Gmail account. Virtru setup will begin and get you started.
Once installed, you’ll need to activate your account. You will also see a popup when you first open Gmail after installing the plugin.
Every time you compose an email, you can then toggle the switch to turn on the Virtru protection.
Further, you can click the Gear icon to set options like Disabling forwarding, expiration date, watermarks, and persistent protection.
The expiration option allows you to control expiry date for minutes, hour, days, week, month, or years.
The watermark options are supported for PDF, DOCX, XLSX, PPTX, JPEG, JPG, and PNG.
With Persistent Protection enabled- the files are protected even if it is shared or downloaded to the computer.
The Virtru dashboard can now also be accessed using your email account to find all the audit logs.
On the receiver’s end, the email is received in the below format.
The receiver has to verify his or her identity when he or she clicks the link in the received email.
Once the email was read by the recipient, the dashboard was updated with the details which can be changed or updated.
A separate plugin to encrypt Google Drive is also available. Below is an example use of Virtru on Google Drive.
How to install Virtru on Outlook?
By visiting the download’s Virtru page on a PC, one can download and install the application to enable Virtru on Outlook
Once the application is installed and activated, the option is visible in Outlook.
In the example below, you can see the button to toggle Virtru on an Outlook email. Similarly, you can also add an encrypted part of the message by toggling the Personalised introduction button.
Adding some unencrypted part to the email also ensures the recipient client receiving your email for the first time does not necessarily treat it as spam.
Use Virtru on Enterprise Apps.
Virtru not only supports Gmail and Microsoft Outlook but can also be integrated with other third-party enterprise Apps.
Some of the third party enterprise Apps Virtru support are Salesforce, Workday, Zendesk, Oracle, SAP, ServiceNow, JIRA etc. Developers can also integrate their custom apps.
To find out more and learn more about Virtru, visit Virtru website here.