Reliable Read Receipts with SecureLine Escrow

April 14th, 2009

Read receipt requests are generally an extremely unreliable way to find out if your recipient has read an email messages that you have sent to him/her.

Why? Because

  • Some email programs do not support read receipts, and thus messages viewed with these would never send you a notice that the message was read.
  • Programs that do support read receipts allow the user to respond to them “always”, “never”, or “ask each time” … with “asking each time” being the default.  As a result, users often will decline your request for a receipt that you have read the message.

However, when messages are sent via LuxSci’s SecureLine Escrow encryption service, read receipts are guaranteed to work.

About SecureLine Escrow

SecureLine Escrow is a means of sending a secure email message to anyone on the Internet who has an email address.  When you send the message to them, it is encrypted and stored in a secure database on our servers.  The recipient gets a notice with a link that they click on to securely access the message content (after verifying themselves by answering a question).

Read Receipts

If you enable “read receipts” on a message sent via SecureLine Escrow, then:

  1. The recipient gets an email notification of the waiting secure email message.  This notice does not contain your message content.
  2. The recipient clicks on a link in that notice and logs into the “Escrow Portal” where your secure message is waiting.
  3. The message is opened and shown to the recipient.
  4. The Escrow system sees your Read Receipt request and automatically sends you back an emailed confirmation that the message has been read.  This is also tracked in the database, so you can view in online reports who has read your messages and when.

Thus, you will always receive an emailed notice that s/he has read the message.  The recipient will not even be made aware of the fact that you have been sent this receipt.

Additionally, with SecureLine Escrow, the sender and recipient have access to an “audit trail” for every message that indicates when it was sent, when viewed, when downloaded, when deleted,  etc.

Retracting Messages

Finally, with SecureLine Escrow, you can actually “retract” a sent message … making it impossible for anyone to view its contents anymore.  If you retract it before it is viewed by your recipient (which you can tell using the audit trail), then you can be sure that the recipient will never be able to access its content.

All of these features are pretty much impossible with normal email.