What Is Cloud Fax?

Posted: May 22, 2013
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The modern fax machine has been around since 1964, when the Xerox Corporation introduced the Long Distance Xerography machine. In 1966 they released an improvement on the LDX called the Magnafax Telecopier, and little about the core mechanics of manual faxing has changed since then.

However, despite the original technology being almost 50 years old, it has managed to weather the telecommunications storm of the internet, email and technological modernization, primarily due to its secure nature.

Email is intrinsically insecure, with multiple third parties including ISP’s, servers and virus scanners all having some access to the data sent in emails. This makes it inappropriate for sending confidential, private data, and has allowed the fax machine to retain its place among the modern office, sitting alongside smart phones and tablets, its half-century old technology still providing a service that could not be replicated through other means.

However, with recent advancements in secure data transmission, new ways have emerged. Fax to email technology now exists, but it has the same insecurities as a normal email system. The solution to fax modernization is cloud faxing.

Cloud fax has all the advantages of traditional, manual faxing with none of the disadvantages. With cloud fax you don’t need two fax machines, reels of paper and lots of expensive ink. You just need a computer or mobile device with connectivity to send the data and some form of receiving device at the other end – another computer, a tablet or a smartphone.

With manual faxing it is necessary to stand and feed page after page of documents into a fax machine – and then wait in line for the received documents to be printed. With cloud faxing there is much more flexibility. There is no need to hover over a machine collecting pages, making sure no-one else intercepts sensitive documents – files come straight to a fax inbox, all in one place, ready to be viewed by an individual or a team at any time at the click of a mouse.

Cloud faxing is also faster than traditional fax machines, saves money on ink and paper and is better for the environment. It is more secure than manual faxing methods, with the added benefit of not forcing the production of a physical paper copy, which then has to be secured in a locked cabinet or drawer and provides a full audit trail.

Anything sent via cloud fax is encrypted before it is sent, during processing and during transfer. This makes it almost impossible for anyone to gain illegitimate access to private documents sent by cloud fax. Even if the data was intercepted by a hacker or other third party, it would be encrypted and would therefore be completely unreadable.

Cloud faxing provides many clear advantages over traditional faxing solutions and email file transfer systems. Manual fax machines are being abandoned as businesses are increasingly turning to cloud faxing for all of their secure data transfer needs.