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InTouch Tag

Introduction

The INtouch service enables personnel on operations to send and receive letters originally sent via email, but received in hard copy form. Despite the ever-growing use of Wi-Fi and mobile data-based technology, and the increased use of social media networks and apps, (including Whatsapp, Facebook, Skype and iMessage) Service personnel deployed overseas still highly value receiving physical mail.

Once an account has been registered, Service personnel, their friends and families are able to create a mail message using either a computer or internet enabled personal electronic device here. This can be done anywhere across the globe.

Once a document has been composed it is electronically encrypted and sent to the imail server. The server routes the item to the nearest UK Mail print centre, where it is securely printed by state-of-the-art equipment. Letters are machine-enveloped and all mail is sent for onward delivery to BFPO Northolt, (the MODs mail sortation depot) to be dispatched across the globe within the military mail system.

Imail INtouch is a service delivered on behalf of the MOD. The service has been established and is monitored by the Permanent Joint Headquarters in Northwood. BFPOs role in the provision of this service is limited to the ‘final mile’ delivery of mail from the BFPO Northolt sortation depot to BFPO addresses across the globe.

 

Sending Mail using INtouch 

Getting started

Personnel and their loved ones will need to register for an account at here. Your account information will be provided to you with 48hrs following verification. You can then simply log here or here and click ‘get started’ to begin sending mail.

Imail INtouch can be used on any internet-enabled device, from anywhere in the world, and is compatible with leading internet browsers for PC and Macintosh. There is not currently an INtouch app and the system can currently only be accessed via the internet.

There is no cost to military personnel, MOD civilians serving overseas and their friends and families to use this service.

 

Addressing mail

To ensure that the imail INtouch letter is delivered as efficiently as possible, please use the addressing convention recommended by BFPO, this is:

Service Number, Rank, Name Unit/Regiment Operation Name BFPO Postcode

Please do not include town or country in the address. The BFPO postcode should appear on the last line of the address.

When entering the address for INtouch messages, you must enter the BFPO postcode rather than the BFPO number.

Each BFPO number across the globe has an associated Postcode. For example BFPO 759 in Kabul in Afghanistan has the postcode BF1 7DZ. These BFPO postcodes have been devised to allow online services across the internet to recognise overseas military addresses.

The BFPO indicator list, showing details for BFPO Postcodes and corresponding BFPO numbers across the globe can be found on the BFPO website here. 

It is possible to send IN touch mail to civilian addresses in Northern Ireland. However, to ensure that the your mail does not compromise individuals’ security being connected or associated with the Armed Forces, please do not include rank or role title within the civilian postal address.

 

Security

Imail INtouch uses 256-bit SSL security as standard. The password-protected system assigns a user name and password to each user. All documents are securely encrypted before being sent from your PC, laptop or personal electronic device to the imail print centre for fulfillment, complying with security and data protection regulations.

Please see security advice on sending INtouch mail to civilian addresses in Northern Ireland in the ‘Addressing mail’ section above.

 

INtouch features

Imail INtouch uses the same high-specification commercial printers in all of its nationwide print centres. These are regularly calibrated, ensuring a quality and consistent print finish that you can rely on, wherever your mail is printed.

When creating a letter, you can attach an A4 PDF documents of up to eight pages, which will be printed along with the letter and inserted as one combined mail piece.

Imail INtouch keeps your contacts database securely within your user space. Simply create your mailing, then enter a single address or upload a csv file and the site will save your addresses on the fly for future use.

Imail INtouch provides you with an instant PDF proof of your mailing, showing the body of the document, as well as the positioning of the address block and return barcode. The PDF can be printed locally for a physical copy for your records or it can be stored electronically on your computer.

Imail INtouch stores mail items for 60 days and they are viewable within the ‘My Archive’ section of the Account Admin area.

 

Tracking mail

Once you have completed your mail and sent it, you will receive on-screen confirmation. The sent order will also be visible in the My Archive area of your imail INtouch interface. You will also receive notification of posting from the UK Mail print centre. Confirmation of delivery to recipient is not currently available for this service.

 

Restrictions of use

The imail INtouch service is only applicable to BFPO addresses overseas and UK postcode addresses only. INtouch mail cannot be sent to INtouch mail to international addresses that do not have a BFPO number. No other international service is available.

 

TROUBLE SHOOTING AND FURTHER INFORMATION

Please complete the contact form or email the company directly at  imail_enquiries@imailprint.co.uk, making reference to the ‘imail INtouch’ service.

An Imail INtouch service quick start guide can be found here.

 

Posted on: 10th June, 2017

Defence Minister Mark Lancaster has announced a new mailing system to replace the e-bluey for friends and family to send letters to personnel serving around the world. The new contract with Neopost will mean Britain’s Armed Forces will continue to receive hard copy, secure mail, including photos, from their loved ones, for free and with no break in service as the new imail INtouch system takes over from the e-bluey on 1 April 2017.

The new imail INtouch system will allow users to send up to eight pages, including high definition photographs and official documents. The old e-bluey system that is being replaced only allowed single pages to be sent and did not support high definition photographs. Use of the e-bluey has dropped by 98% since 2007, with the same fixed cost, meaning it no longer provided value for money for the taxpayer.

 

Anna Wright, Director of the Naval Families Federation said:

“With 55% of all deployed Armed Forces personnel being from the Naval Service, the provision of the new imail system is really important for our families. We’d really like to hear from serving people and their families about how they find this new service and we encourage them to get in touch with us”.

 

Defence Minister Mark Lancaster said:

“We are investing in a better mail service to make sure our Armed Forces can stay in touch with their loved ones for free when they are away from home. Along with improved internet connections and global post deliveries, imail means families can now send longer messages and share higher quality photos than before with personnel serving around the world.”

 

The MOD’s new contract with Neopost will reflect actual usage and offer around half a million pounds worth of savings, which will be reinvested into welfare services like improved internet and Wi-Fi provision around the world. By offering both secure internet calls, emails, a letter and parcel service, as well as the imail INtouch service, we have ensured that our personnel have a range of ways of keeping in touch with their loved ones while they are deployed.

 

Posted on: 28th March, 2017