****DO NOT PUBLISH ******** Secure Email Encryption and Galaxkey

Important information for schools sending secure encrypted emails to Bradford Council using Galaxkey.

City of Bradford Metropolitan Council has a need to send and receive data in emails using a secure service with many of its external partners including schools. You may have previously interacted with the Council by sending email to an @bradford.gcsx.uk email account, however following advances in email security protocols Central Government has instructed that gcsx email addresses must now be closed down for exchanging secure email with our local authority and public sector partners.

Without getting into technicalities, the important thing you need to be assured of is that an email address you propose to send from supports a technology called Transport Layer Security or ‘TLS’.

  1. If the domain of the school you are sending from (the bit after the @ in the email address) supports TLS, then you may safely send and receive sensitive information from a @bradford.gov.uk account.
  2. If you are unsure as to whether your email address supports TLS, then fortunately there is a handy checker at https://www.checktls.com/ - Simply enter the email address you wish to test for TLS compliance.  If your Confidence Factor? was 90 or better, the email address meets security standards and you may safely use it to share sensitive information from your @bradford.gov.uk address.
  3. If your Confidence Factor? was 89 or less you are NOT permitted to share sensitive information with an @bradford.gov.uk account. In this case, you must additionally encrypt your email with Galaxkey.
  4. There are two ways our partners like schools can sign up to the Galaxkey Service, either you can go to www.galaxkey.com  to register/sign up for an account prior to receiving an email from the Council, or you follow the instructions contained in the first secure email you receive from the Council.
  5. There is absolutely no charge for schools to use the Galaxkey system when exchanging emails with Bradford Council email addresses.
  6. Please be careful because some of our partners have subscribed in error for a paid subscription for Galaxkey. If you are only using Galaxkey to exchange information with Bradford Council then you should not have to subscribe and it is free.
  7. If you do get prompted to subscribe please contact Galaxkey support via the details on www.galaxkey.com  directly initially who will be able to clarify why the school is receiving the subscription prompts. Their Sales Team should have checked thoroughly what the school’s requirements were before a paid for corporate Galaxkey licence was created, if it was created in error it can be reversed back to the free version.


Published: 10/05/2019
Audience: All Headteachers, Senior Leadership Team, IT Managers, Business Managers and Data Managers
Contact: Jonny Trayer

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