Typically, the first question we get asked by a prospective customer is “What does it cost.” Although cost is an important consideration (and we very much understand and appreciate the need to keep costs low) there are many other considerations that are as important as (or even more important than) cost.
Interestingly, more than half of our customers have come to us a result of a poor experience with another vendor. Translation: a cheap price can be appealing initially, but come to haunt you when it doesn’t work as advertised. Frustration, wasted time and money doesn’t have to be the result.
So, what should you look for when evaluating an email encryption solution?
1. Company Focus
First, look to see if they provide products or services other than encrypted email. Most secure email providers sell to everyone who needs it. While this might be opportunistic from a revenue standpoint, it means that they often don’t understand or appreciate the nuances of title, escrow or real estate settlement. Why does that matter? A solution needs to respect how you work and be designed with your use case in mind. While there are similarities between many email encryption providers, it’s the subtle differences that make a product useful (or painful) depending on how you work and need to get things done.
2. Notification Deliverability
An email is an email… right? We’ll perhaps, until your messages and notifications start showing up in the recipient’s spam folder (or don’t get delivered at all). Significant expertise is required in order to format outgoing messages properly and ensure delivery. Notifications are checked daily for spam scores and deliverability rates. Our tech team is highly experienced in the nuances of email and how message filtering works. What does this mean to you? That your customer will be able to actually receive what you’re sending!
3. Lender Support
Port blocking by lenders is a particularly frustrating problem that affects many secure email providers. Even though the recipient receives the email notification to their inbox, they are unable to view the message or download the documents. In the Real Estate Settlement / Land Title industry this is a very common issue because most of the time title and escrow companies need to send transaction information to a lender. Bank policies are, understandably, strict as they want to avoid giving access to any remote service that isn’t absolutely needed.
4. Ease of Use
We know that you’re busy trying to solve problems and get stuff done during the day. A solution to protect your customer’s NPI shouldn’t be complicated or force you to login to a portal just to send messages or attachments. It needs to work with the tools that you’re already familiar with.
5. End-User Experience
This consideration is often overlooked entirely until the complaints start rolling in. Not only does it need to be easy for the sender but, once the message has been sent, it needs to be easy to receive, manage and reply to messages for the recipient. Sendside includes 4 distinct “Send Methods” that gives the sender control over the end-user experience. Choose from Standard Secure, Challenge & Response, Message by PIN or No-Login required (NLR). Please refer to our page on supported Send Methods for more information.
6. End-User Support
SecureSync for Email is a “fire and forget” technology. Unlike other systems that require you to manage credentials and access rights, once a message is sent, it’s our job to make sure that the recipient has access. What if they forget their password? We got ‘em covered. (Although keep in mind that you don’t have to send messages that require User IDs or Passwords).
7. Tracking & Reporting
Business communications have unique requirements. Sometimes, you absolutely need to know when a message was sent, when it was received and, importantly, when a particular document was downloaded. This is even more important with the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosures (TRID) rules. SecureSync for Email has been designed to provide accountability through the entire voyage. Trackable events include: message sent, notification read, message read, document downloaded, all documents downloaded, document viewed and message replies. While you don’t need this information everyday, when you do need it, you need it!
8. Support for Large Files / Numerous Attachments
Let’s face it: email has some MAJOR limitations. Security and tracking are common shortcomings with email but so is its inability to handle large files gracefully. Many of our customers send numerous attachments and very large messages (more than 100 attachments that can exceed 100MB). Modern email systems summarily reject any message over 20MB in size making it a challenge to get files where you need to. Sendside for Outlook, our large file solution, can handle 999 attachments per message and file sizes up to 500MB!
No question that cost is an important consideration. With the new regulations and best practices, Title and Escrow companies are being forced to adopt new solutions that add complexity and costs. A secure email service should be “competitive” with other offerings but, given how inexpensive this service is, greater emphasis should be placed on how well the service integrates into your current workflow and how effective it is with meeting your needs.
10. Synchronization & Integration with Existing Applications
Email, and now increasingly, secure email, are being used to communicate with the many parties in a real estate transaction. Emails are often triggered from a title or escrow management system or file and folder management system like GreenFolders. In addition to thinking about all the outgoing communications, thought now needs to be given to the replies that are related to a specific transaction. Keeping all of these outbound and inbound messages in sync is a real challenge. SecureSync is designed to move messages, documents and data securely between several key systems. This focus on integration can help make a big difference with how well everything “works.”
11. Tablet & Mobile Device Support
Increasingly, business is conducted at home or while on the go. Having access on your tablet or mobile device means that it’s a breeze to stay connected and keep transactions moving along. SecureSync for Email can keep your secure communications channel synchronized with your phone AND your tablet!
In addition to your outgoing communications looking good and professional, many customers want the ability to control the branding. Being able to place your company’s logo on outgoing communications (and various interactions they might have on the Sendside platform) adds a touch of quality and individuality to outgoing communications. The Sendside platform provides many branding opportunities that include the (email) notification, the secure message itself, the document repository and the splash and loading pages, to name a few.
Placement on the Sendside platform requires specific sizes and formats. If you’re unable to handle this yourself, we offer a Branding Assist Package to help get your logos looking great on our platform.
Need more information?
Get in Touch with Us!