How to Send an Email Securely from Outlook: Step-by-Step Guide

How to Send an Email Securely from Outlook: Step-by-Step Guide
Secure Email

Outlook is a popular email client that is widely used by individuals and businesses. While sending emails, it's crucial to ensure that the information remains secure and confidential. If you want to know how to send an email securely from Outlook, this article provides a step-by-step guide to help you achieve that.

How to Send an Email Securely from Outlook

Encrypting Email Messages

To encrypt an email message, follow these simple steps:

  1. Open Outlook and click on New Email to compose a new message
  2. Click on the Options tab in the ribbon menu at the top of the message window.
  3. Click on Permissions and select the encryption option you prefer, such as Do Not Forward, from the drop down menu. This step will help enforce the restrictions you want to apply
  4. In the same message window, click on File and then Properties
  5. In the Properties dialog box, click on Security Settings
  6. Select the "Encrypt message contents and attachments" check box and click on OK.
  7. Complete your message and send it as you usually would.
  8. Your email will now be sent in an encrypted form, which will ensure that its content remains secure and protected from unauthorized access [1]
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Importing Certificates in Outlook

To import a certificate in Outlook, follow these simple steps:

  1. Open the Outlook application.
  2. Click on the File menu and select Options
  3. On the left side of the Outlook Options tab, select Trust Centre.
  4. Click on the Trust Centre Settings button at the bottom of the menu.
  5. Click on Email Security in the left pane and then click on Import/Export under Digital IDs.
  6. Follow the prompts to import the certificate.
  7. Once you have imported the certificate, compose a new email message and select the certificate from the dropdown list in the security settings.
  8. Complete your message and send it as you usually would.
  9. Your email will now be sent with the added security of the digital certificate [2]

Individual Email Messages

To send an individual email message securely, follow these steps:

  1. Launch the Outlook app and click on New email to compose a new message.
  2. Navigate to the Options tab and click on the arrow next to More options.
  3. In the Properties dialog that pops up, click on Security Settings.
  4. Check the Encrypt message contents and attachments box.
  5. Complete your message and send it as you usually would [3]


What is email encryption?

  • Email encryption is a security measure that protects the content of an email message by encoding it in a way that can only be deciphered by someone with the appropriate decryption key.

How can I tell if an email is encrypted?

  • Encrypted emails often have a lock icon or other indicator in the message header or body. Some email clients, like Outlook, may also display a message indicating that the email is encrypted.

How do I enable email encryption in Outlook?

  • Outlook supports several methods of email encryption, including S/MIME and Office 365 Message Encryption. You can enable these features by following the steps outlined in our guide.

Will encrypted emails take longer to send or receive?

  • Yes, encrypted emails may take slightly longer to send or receive because of the additional processing required to encode and decode the message.

What happens if the recipient can't decrypt my email?

  • If the recipient is unable to decrypt your email, they may receive an error message or be prompted to enter a decryption key or password. In some cases, they may not be able to read the message at all.

Is email encryption necessary for all emails?

  • Email encryption is not necessary for all emails, but it is recommended for sensitive or confidential information, such as financial data, personal information, or trade secrets.

Can I send encrypted emails to anyone?

  • You can only send encrypted emails to recipients who have a compatible email client or encryption software. Otherwise, they will not be able to decrypt and read the message.

How do I know if my email recipient can receive encrypted emails?

  • You can check with the recipient or their IT department to confirm whether they have encryption capabilities. Alternatively, you can use a third-party encryption service that provides secure email delivery.

Can I encrypt email attachments as well?

  • Yes, you can encrypt email attachments using the same encryption methods as for the email message itself. This can help to further protect sensitive information.

What should I do if I receive an encrypted email?

  • If you receive an encrypted email, you will need to follow the decryption process outlined in the message or use compatible encryption software.