Faxing has been around for decades. While some businesses have switched over primarily or exclusively to Internet-based communication strategies already, those in the healthcare, legal, and financial services industries still prefer to send faxes. There’s a good reason for this seeming reluctance to embrace modernity: put simply, faxing is more secure than email.
The Problem With Fax Machines
The problem is, fax machines are bulky, expensive to maintain, and inconvenient to use. This kind of legacy equipment also creates security issues of its own since anyone walking by can see the documents being sent and received. As a result, most businesses that handle sensitive information have already switched to cloud faxing.
Is Cloud Faxing Still Secure?
For businesses that have already made the switch to cloud-based solutions, sending a secure fax is simple. Users can simply upload attachments and send them as faxes through a secure cloud faxing service provider. Receiving faxes by email is just as simple and secure.
Cloud Faxing vs. Emailing
Given that most companies no longer maintain physical fax machines, it makes more sense to compare cloud faxing to sending emails than it does to sending traditional faxes. When it comes to data security, using cloud faxing services comes with three main benefits over sending emails:
- A Higher Level of Encryption
Sending traditional emails to business associates is fine as long as they don’t contain sensitive information. Because emails are vulnerable to interception, even encrypted emails are not appropriate for sending confidential information. The problems with encrypted email services are that they:
- Only encrypt messages, not subjects and email addresses.
Require the sender and recipient to have the same key or software for encryption and decryption.
Don’t encrypt stored emails.
Cost more than cloud faxing, which can be prohibitively expensive for small businesses.
Cloud faxing, on the other hand, is designed to be as secure as possible. The security features used to protect sensitive data go beyond more powerful encryption to incorporate things like multi-factor authentication, authorization restrictions, automated session time-outs, audit trails, and more.
- Admissibility in Court
Law offices continue to use fax as a primary means of communication not just because it’s more secure but also because it can create documents that are legally binding and admissible in court. For this to be the case, the document’s authenticity has to be provable. Because email services are notoriously vulnerable to fraud and hacking, emails are not generally admissible in court.
Virtual faxes, on the other hand, are generally considered legally binding. Faxed signatures are also valid for most deals and transactions. The best part is that cloud faxing is just as easy as sending emails.
- Compliance With Industry Regulations
These days, more companies than ever are subject to increasingly strict industry regulations designed to prevent data breaches. From the GDPR in Europe to the PCI-DSS protocols in the United States, information security officers have more on their plates than ever when it comes to ensuring compliance. In most cases, even encrypted email transmission violates data protection and security regulations, while secure cloud faxing services do not.
Make the Switch
For organizations that are still relying on legacy fax machines or, even worse, sending sensitive information via encrypted emails, it’s time to make a change. Cloud faxing services make it easy to send and receive documents without worrying about security.