Post Office launches e-registered mail

Post Office CEO Mark Barnes launching the state-owned company's latest product. (Supplied)
Post Office CEO Mark Barnes launching the state-owned company's latest product. (Supplied)

Johannesburg - Traditional paper-based registered mail can now be sent to email addresses, the South African Post Office (Sapo) has announced this week.

Paper-based registered mail typically involves proof of delivery and a full audit trail that is recorded and made available to the sender.

Users of registered mail include the likes of traffic police who use it to determine if recipients have received their mail. This type of mail can also be used in a court of law.

Subsequently, Sapo has made this registered mail type digital.

“At a cost of R16,00 (excluding VAT) per eRegistered Mail sent, eRegistered Mail offers a substantial cost advantage over the alternatives such as delivery of legal papers by the sheriff of the court,” said Sapo in a statement.

“In terms of Section 19(4) of the ECT (Electronic and Communications Transactions) Act 25 of 2002, eRegistered Mail has the same legal status as paper-based registered mail. With eRegistered Mail, business or individual users can reach anyone with a valid email address,” said Sapo.

But the service has a wide application as Sapo said it also caters for once-off mail users, small and medium users or institutions that send post in large volumes. 

“In fact, anyone who needs to send registered mail can use this system as long as they have access to the web and have the email address of the intended recipient,” said Sapo.

Sapo further said that access to the system is restricted to ensure protection of data and security.

Users of the service are also authenticated through a username and password as well as digital certificates via a “digital postbox”, said Sapo.

The postbox for eRegistered mail is free and the owner can select parties from which they want to receive mail. Sapo promises that “no spam and no phishing is possible”.

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