This Service Causes Sensitive (or Embarrassing) Gmails to Self-Destruct
Wishing you could take back that typo-riddled email you just sent? There’s an app—or more specifically, a Google Chrome extension—for that.
Gmail already allows some protection from hasty typing via its “Undo send” button. But if that 30-second limit is too short, Dmail is here to the rescue. Emails sent through the service “self-destruct” at a specified time, which makes it the ideal medium for sending sensitive information (mailing addresses, bank information, weepy love letters to your ex—you know, the usual). If a user initially forgoes the timer setting, he or she can still choose to revoke access to a message later.
Dmail, which works even if an email’s recipients don’t have the extension installed, doesn’t physically remove messages from recipients' inboxes. Instead, it serves to encrypt and then decrypt emails on one’s machine.
"An encrypted copy of that email is sent to a datastore controlled by Dmail. The recipient of the email is sent both the location of that datastore, as well as a key to view the decrypted message," Dmail product developer Eric Kuhn told TechCrunch. "Neither Gmail nor Dmail servers ever receive both the decryption key and encrypted message. Only the recipient and sender can read the email legibly."
There are some drawbacks to the Dmail experience. Namely, that whoever you regret emailing will still see that he or she has gotten a message from you. In the original message’s place is a warning that “This message has been destroyed and is no longer available.”
From there, of course, it’s up to you to figure out a cover story. Which is a small price to pay if it means avoiding major awkwardness later.
[h/t The Verge]