Are Free Email Services Worth It?

The recent “Emailgate” scandal in Trinidad and Tobago has caused many business to re-evaluate the structure and security of their corporate email portfolios.

Security breaches of free, web-based email services like Hotmail (Live/Outlook.com), Yahoo! Mail and Gmail are at an all time high. If you have ever received strange messages or a single hyperlink in an email from someone you know, then you have been the target of an attack. Spam email from known contacts indicate that the person’s actual account (and address book) has been compromised and clicking on the link will likely result in your email and entire address book being compromised as well.

The widespread popularity of free email services means that its users are at much greater risk of email and address book hacking by malicious entities. Because of these vulnerabilities, business owners should avoid using free email services for their commercial operations. The risk of a breach (not to mention the potential consequences of clients and partners receiving spam from your account) is just too high.

In addition, use of free email services projects an unprofessional image to clients, business associates and potential customers. You want an email address that uses the name of your business in the domain field (eg. john.doe@mybusiness.com).

Registering a domain name for your business and hosting your company’s email on it is fairly easy, surprisingly inexpensive and well worth it in terms of security, professionalism and peace of mind.