Cyber security should be high on every organisation’s list of priorities. But when it comes to organisations connected to the criminal justice system, the need to regularly transmit highly sensitive data means security takes on an even higher level of importance, especially in today’s digital age where phishing, malware and scammers are using advanced techniques to gain a user’s credentials and cause harm.
The Criminal Justice Secure Email (CJSM) system is designed to facilitate the communication of sensitive information between organisations in the criminal justice system. This highly secure email system is only available to Government Departments, Legal Counsel and some legal practitioners.
To get access to CJSM, each organisation has to go through rigorous assurance processes, including providing sponsor details and a physical address. Once accepted, users can access the secure email through a dedicated web portal.
What is CJSM?
CJSM stands for Criminal Justice Secure Mail. Initially created as the backbone of communication within the criminal justice system, CJSM’s unmatched security features have found relevance and adoption outside its original domain.
What does CJSM stand for?
While the acronym represents Criminal Justice Secure Mail, in the broader context, it stands for secure, encrypted, and efficient email communication tailored to professional sectors requiring an extra layer of digital protection.
Who uses CJSM?
Its inception might have been in the criminal justice world. Still, today, the users of CJSM email span various professional realms—from legal teams and healthcare professionals to corporate sectors handling sensitive data.
Cyber Essentials and CJSM
Both Cyber Essentials and CJSM (Criminal Justice Secure eMail) are UK-based initiatives aimed at enhancing cyber security and secure communication, but they serve different purposes and are used in different contexts. Here’s a breakdown of what they have in common, how they differ, and why they should be used together to help fortify your business:
What They Have in Common:
- UK-Based: Both are initiatives based in the United Kingdom.
- Security Focus: Both are designed to improve the security of electronic communications and data storage.
- Compliance: Organisations often need to comply with these standards to work with certain sectors of the UK government or other sensitive industries.
- Audit and Certification: Both require some level of auditing or assessment to ensure compliance with security standards.
- Data Protection: Both aim to protect sensitive data from unauthorised access and cyber threats.
Differences between Cyber Essentials and CJSM:
- Cyber Essentials: A government-backed scheme that sets out a baseline of cybersecurity for organizations. It is more general-purpose and can be applied to any organization.
- CJSM: Specifically designed for secure email communication within the Criminal Justice System. It is specialized for legal professionals, law enforcement agencies, and other entities involved in the justice system.
- Cyber Essentials: Covers a range of cybersecurity controls including firewalls, secure configuration, user access control, malware protection, and patch management.
- CJSM: Primarily focused on secure email communication, ensuring that sensitive information is transmitted securely.
- Cyber Essentials: Any organisation can apply for Cyber Essentials certification.
- CJSM: Primarily used by professionals and organisations involved in the UK’s Criminal Justice System.
- Cyber Essentials: Organisations can get certified to show they meet a certain standard of cybersecurity.
- CJSM: Organisations don’t get “certified” in CJSM; rather, they get approved for an account that allows them to send secure emails within the justice system.
- Cyber Essentials: Requires an application and an audit by an accredited body, such as Excellence IT.
- CJSM: Requires an application but focuses more on verifying the credentials of the individuals or organisations applying for an account.
- Cyber Essentials: There is a cost associated with certification and consultancy.
- CJSM: Usually no cost for basic email service, but there may be costs for additional features or services.
- Cyber Essentials: Requires periodic renewal of the certification.
- CJSM: May require periodic re-verification of credentials but not a renewal of certification per se.
- Cyber Essentials: More comprehensive, covering various aspects of an organisation’s IT infrastructure.
- CJSM: Primarily focused on email security protocols.
Whilst Cyber Essentials is a more general cyber security certification, and CJSM is specialised for secure email communication within the UK’s Criminal Justice System, the combination of both CJSM and Cyber Essentials Certification is a perfect balance to enhancing cyber security.
CJSM Secure Email
One of the quintessential features setting CJSM apart from generic email platforms is its CJSM secure email system.
What is CJSM Secure Email?
CJSM secure email as a fortified chamber for your digital communication. It’s not just about sending and receiving emails but ensuring that the entire communication process—from composing the email to its delivery—is wrapped in multiple layers of security.
Why is CJSM secure email so popular?
In 2013, data breaches commonly make the headlines. CJSM secure email promises (and delivers) peace of mind that few other platforms can. It offers end-to-end encryption, multi-factor authentication, and stringent security checks, ensuring the sanctity of your communication is never compromised.
Gaining Access to CJSM Email
To get access to CJSM, each organisation has to go through rigorous assurance processes, including providing sponsor details and a physical address. This involves a comprehensive verification process to validate the authenticity of the user, ensuring only legitimate entities gain access. Once accepted, users can access the secure email through a dedicated web portal.
This is sufficient for some users and organisations – they use the web portal to send and receive sensitive information and their regular email system for everything else. For many, however, having two separate emails is unintuitive and clunky; they prefer to access all their emails in one place.
This can be done if CJSM authorises a connection from your mail platform to their system. Authorising these connections, however, is not something that is done lightly. Fortunately, we have experience helping our customers navigate the process at Excellence IT.
Connecting CJSM to Your Email Platform of Choice
Having a connection authorised involves the CJSM thoroughly interrogating your organisation’s IT policies, processes and infrastructure, focusing heavily on security. We can fully manage your application, making sense of the more detailed technical requirements and recommending security measures that improve your chance of a successful application. Once the connection is approved, it’s simply a case of supplying CJSM with the relevant details of your system and configuring your mail application, whether that’s Outlook or Gmail.
Setting Up Your CJSM Secure Email Account
Once the verification concludes, new users receive a detailed guide on setting up their ‘CJSM secure email’ account. From choosing a resilient password to familiarising oneself with the user interface, the process is streamlined for ease and security.
Using the CJSM Platform/Dashboard
With the setup complete, it’s time to delve deeper into the CJSM email’s operational aspects.
CJSM’s interface is meticulously designed to be user-friendly while maintaining its robust security standards. The dashboard provides a quick overview—be it unread emails, important notifications, or system updates.
Sending, Receiving and Organising Emails
Much like any other email platform, users can compose, send, and receive emails. However, the added layer of CJSM secure email encryption ensures that every communication is shielded from potential threats.
CJSM Helpdesk Support
No platform, no matter how advanced, is free from occasional hitches. This is where CJSM’s robust support system steps in.
How Do I Reach Out for Assistance?
If users ever face technical issues or require guidance, the CJSM helpdesk is at their service. Users can access the most up-to-date contact details through the official website, ensuring swift and effective resolutions.
From forgotten passwords to email delivery issues, the helpdesk provides solutions to many common concerns, ensuring users enjoy an uninterrupted CJSM experience.
Reapplying for CJSM
Your connection to the CJSM system is based on both your domains and your email platform, so if either of these things changes, your connection may be disabled. For example, migrating to the cloud, changing your email system or even changing your domain from ‘.com’ to ‘.co.uk’ might mean that CJSM disabled the connection to your standard email platform. The only way to reinstate the connection is to reapply.
Best of Both Worlds
We’re firm believers in the idea that technology should never make things more difficult for people to do their jobs. That’s why we’ve helped several organisations connect their email platform to CJSM without making them fill in onerous forms or jump between the CJSM web portal and their email systems.
If you want to help bridge the gap between compliance and convenience, contact us by submitting the form at the bottom of this page, or email us via email@example.com
Writes about IT Support and Cyber Security.