Which is Safer: Hardline Fax Machines or Internet Faxing?

I have a fax machine, but I’m thinking about moving to Internet faxing. Which one is more secure?

That’s a great question. I’m biased toward Internet-based faxing, which I’ve used personally since the early 1990s. Online faxing is easy, environmentally friendly, and affordable (even free via my service FaxZero.)

But both methods have benefits and drawbacks. A fax sent through an online fax service benefits from Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption, which is a form of cryptography that keeps sensitive information on the Internet confidential. When you sign up for a service like SRfax or FaxItNice, you get password encryption at well, meaning that you and your recipient are the only ones who can access the fax information. On the other hand, faxes sent over the Internet have to pass through at least one server, and are often stored in an electronic archive. That means that, no matter how secure the storage is, more people have potential access to your information, and the possibility exists of it being hacked. However, that likelihood is very small. It’s always a good idea to check the privacy policies and security measures of the online fax services you’re considering.

When it comes to traditional, old-school faxes over a phone line, the transaction is fairly straightforward. The information exists only between you and your recipient, and the information is not stored along the way. However, you can’t guarantee that your fax will reach your recipient securely. For example, someone could come by and take the physical copy of the fax from the fax machine. The possibility of faxing the wrong person simply by dialing the wrong number is also a potential problem with either method.

Ultimately, both methods are quite safe, and you shouldn’t be nervous about moving to Internet faxing.

Do you have a question about faxing? Send me your fax question.