SSL stands for Secured Socket Layer – basically it is a secure way of providing authentication and encryption during communication online between your computer and our STACKMAIL mail server.
(This article applies only to those accounts migrated to our new platform from 2018 onwards).
When you use a standard POP or IMAP connection to download your email (the most popular method still in use), your username and password is sent in clear text across the Internet. This means that anyone using the same wireless connection as you, or the same network as you, or watching traffic at your ISP – or anyone in a position to see your Internet traffic can potentially “intercept” your network traffic and clearly read your username and password. With this information, they can easily read all your email and worse, steal confidential information, send out spam or perform other malicious acts.
A hacker may not be interested in you or your business but increasingly, they want this information so that they can log into your account to send spam. By using your legitimate username and password, they can send out much more spam before having to move on to another address. Recent research claims that cyber criminals are focusing on acquiring as many compromised email accounts as possible. Mostly so they can send out “phishing” emails – or scam emails asking for money.
Have you ever received an email from someone in your address book that is asking for money or some strange request – e.g. “I’m in Spain and got robbed – please send me money! ” – if you have, this is often the result of someone hacking into their email, or social media account.
How to be more secure?
An SSL connection encrypts your email traffic so that it cannot be read at any point between your computer and the Stack mail server that you are using with our upgraded platform.
The downside is that usually, email is not encrypted once it continues its onward journey across the internet, to its destination (unless both parties have set up mutual digital certificates). However, at least your connection to the server is more secure.