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(Investors.com) – While Google’s announcement that it wants to encrypt all Gmail messages while they’re in transit was praised for making government spying more difficult, observers point out that the move won’t save your messages from Google’s own prying eyes.

“The email provider can still see the message. They’re just encrypting it when it’s going over the Internet, not when the message is in their own system,” said Seth Schoen, a senior technologist with the privacy group Electronic Frontier Foundation. Schoen walked this reporter through the myriad possible methods of email encryption.

Google, in a blog post this month, said that Gmail has “always supported” data encryption during the transportation of emails, using a type of encryption called Transport Layer Security.

But other email carriers don’t always support TLS, so only about half of emails received by Gmail users are encrypted, Google said.

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