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How To Use Confidential Mode In Gmail

Gmail has been redesigned and the new Gmail isn’t just cosmetic changes. There are new features that have been added to the email service, and still more to come. Gmail is getting a predictive text feature soon that will let you select suggested words to autocomplete a message. For now, the newest feature that’s now available is the confidential mode in Gmail.

In confidential mode in Gmail, the email message that you send expires after a set period of time. By default, this period of time is 1 week however, you can set a different period. A confidential message can have an extra layer of security whereby the recipient has to enter a passcode that is sent to them as an SMS. This particular feature’s availability is limited by country so not everyone who gets confidential mode in Gmail will be able to use it.

Confidential Mode In Gmail

Open Gmail, and click the compose button at the top left. Along the bottom, you should see a new icon with a pad lock and a clock. Click it.

A new window will open where you can set when the message will expire. You have preset time periods; one day, one week, one month, one year, and five years. You cannot set a time of day when the message will expire. To add a passcode, select the ‘SMS passcode’ option. If your message has more than one recipient, you have to enter a phone number for each recipient. The SMS passcode that your recipient needs to unlock the message will be sent to the number you enter so make sure it’s the right one.

That’s about it. You can send the message and if you want, you can undo it within 30 seconds. If you later realize that you sent the message to the wrong person, you can click a Revoke Access button on the sent message and stop your recipient from opening.

Confidential emails do not open inside the Gmail interface. You will get a message in Gmail but when you open it, you will have to click a second button to view the message in a new tab. If you revoke access to a message, the email won’t disappear from the recipient’s inbox however, when they click on the message link inside the email, Gmail will tell them they do not have access to the message.

Access to a message is revoked indiscriminately for all recipients of a message. You can’t choose to revoke access to one person, and allow other people to still view it. You can renew access later.

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