Remember that time when you received an Email in your Gmail Inbox, You used to open it and there it was an ugly box saying “Images are not displayed.” and asks you whether you want to “Display images below” and also gives you an option to add the sender to a trusted list (whitelist) after which the sender’s email images will always be displayed without confirmation.
Well that ugly box was there for a reason.
That confirmation box asking if you want to display the images in the email was there for your own safety and privacy. Do you think it is a good idea to have images load automatically on your Email when you are at work? Hence privacy is a factor.
Spammers and Hackers have been using tracking images to record your details.
How this works is, Your email app loads the image in your browser > The tracking image has codes embedded in it that records your IP, Browser details, OS details, Location and much much more and then sends it back to the sender of the Email.
Would you want to share these details with some stranger?
So what changed?
Just recently, Google announced that they have removed that ugly confirmation box and will henceforth be displaying all the images in your email without your confirmation! Yay!
Why did Google do this? Don’t they care about their user’s security?
They do care about your security! They didn’t just plainly remove that confirmation option while keeping things the same. They changed a few things to make the image delivery more secure.
Google now caches these images you receive in your email, into their own servers and then serves them directly from these caches. Hence preventing any kind of tracking images from collecting your details.
Then why do I need to re-enable the confirmation?
Mainly because nothing can be considered secure, Hackers might find a way around the caching and also because of the privacy factor I talked about above.
How to Disable Automatic Loading of Images in Gmail.
So here is how you can re-enable the confirmation for images in your email. It is simple and takes 5 seconds.
Step 1. Login to your Gmail account.
Step 2. Click on the Gear Icon > Settings.
Step 3. When you are in the General Settings tab, Scroll down until you see the Images option.
Step 4. Click on the radio button beside “Ask before displaying external images”.
Step 5. As a safety procedure, check if you have “Always use https” ticked. If not choose it and click on “Save changes”.
Now you just have to reload your Gmail Inbox to see the changes in effect. Just open an email with Images and you will be shown that ugly (yet useful) confirmation box.
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