Google News Security

Google Announces Optical Character Recognition To Scan Attachments For Sensitive Information

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Tightening the security around Gmail even further, Google is adding some high-end features to the mail service. The brand new service will apparently let businesses monitor the transfer of sensitive information and documents, associated with them.

The newest features have been announced under Google’s data loss prevention program and will be available to  Google Apps Unlimited Customers.

Speaking on the topic, Gerhard Eschelbeck, VP of Security & Privacy Engineering said,


When we think about innovation at Google, most of us think about balloons delivering wireless access or driverless cars. But for many years, we’ve been innovating at scale with security as well.

In its December announcement, Google had announced,

If you’re a Google Apps Unlimited customer, Data Loss Prevention (DLP) for Gmail will add another layer of protection to prevent sensitive information from being revealed to those who shouldn’t have it.


Google had announced the content monitoring feature back in December itself and hinted at the possibility of a more inclusive monitoring system. And the company is making good on its promise by continuously improving the security features on offer.

The latest feature for example, will let admins monitor sensitive information in scanned copies and images as well by scanning the attachments transferring over the Gmail network. The feature, which deploys Optical Character Recognition, will definitely be of help to the security personnel of organizations dealing in sensitive information.

Here is how Google explains the working of the newly integrated technology.

Optical character recognition (OCR) is a technology that extracts text from images; for example, converting an image of an invoice into text. If you turn on the Optical character recognition (OCR) setting, any relevant image attachments are converted to text, and the text is then subject to any Content compliance or Objectionable content rules you set up.

We expect to hear more on the topic tomorrow, when Gerhard Eschelbeck will speak about the ongoing and upcoming changes with regards to security at Google Inc. at the RSA Conference, happening this week in San Francisco.

Stay tuned!


A bibliophile and a business enthusiast.

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