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Engineering

Security of : POP vs. IMAP

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Which implantation is technically less exploitable and safer/reliable for a secure enterprise environment?

Which of the two would you personally use? (And why, security-wise.)

(POP3/RFC 1939 vs. IMAP4rev1/RFC 3501) - or whichever is implemented on the major email providers nowadays.

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Neither protocol is secure. Both send username/passwords in the clear, and transact in the clear. IMAP is the better protocol in terms of its abilities, but security-wise both really are poor candidates.

For any security, you'll have to make use of SSL/TLS.

Edited by Seal
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What seal said.

But not every e-mail provider allows SSL. I know gmail does, and you can sign up corporate accounts with them.

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I was thinking that with POP, your emails are downloaded once and then stored on your hard drive, so they are transported over the net only the once.

With IMAP they are stored on the server, and so sent over the net each time you log in.

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That's true. With POP, you can download your mail once and store it on your hard drive. You can also do this from trusted networks, and have a copy of it to bring with you to untrusted networks. Though, if you have to check your mail on an untrusted network, that's not very useful.

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You can use witch one you want. It depends on the configuration and you can use encrypted tunnels to transfer the data on the network, like SSH !

And make linux servers not windows.

Edited by BoogY
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